"The only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilized community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant." ~ John Stuart Mill
Exclusive to STR
I can see that you are a good, caring person; your social conscience requires you to be concerned about your own welfare and the needs of others. Problems arise when you refuse to embrace logic, open your own wallet or soil your hands to help the needy, but insist that someone else pay to 'take care of everyone.'
It doesn't seem to matter to you that most dollars earmarked 'welfare' do not go to recipients, but to the middle class government bureaucrats. It doesn't matter either that most welfare recipients are in their current circumstances because they have made poor choices or that many are perfectly capable of providing for themselves. It doesn't matter that the U.S. government borrows billions of dollars a year to keep the handout machine rolling. It doesn't matter that many of the working are poor because of the taxes you've decided are good and necessary and an inflated money supply that you also created. It doesn't even matter that there are now third generation welfare families in this country ' they can't work, but they can birth and raise children? That's not work?
You wouldn't steal our wallets and hand our money over to someone who 'needed' it, no matter how much you might like to. Besides soiling your hands and having a seizure of conscience, you know that that would be wrong and that you could go to jail. Why do you think it is appropriate and morally acceptable for you to ask the government to take the money from the wallets of your neighbors and give it away? It seems there must be some serious disconnect there. Because some people are politicians, they can somehow divine how all this good should somehow be accomplished? Or is it that you don't really want to be bothered with the details, you just want someone to handle your problems and those of the 'poor' people so you can feel comfortable again? If you don't see the guns, then it's really not theft?
I can see that you are a good and optimistic citizen. You wouldn't dream of staying home on Election Day. You have undying hope of government actually getting it right despite centuries and millions of innocent lives and fortunes wasted as evidence that it hasn't yet. There is a psychological term for this--it's called 'delusion.' Wikipedia says that delusion is: 'A false belief based on incorrect inference about external reality that is firmly sustained, despite what almost everybody else believes and despite what constitutes incontrovertible and obvious proof or evidence to the contrary.' Dictionary.com calls it, 'a fixed false belief that is resistant to reason or confrontation with actual fact.'
You are free to persist in your delusions and no doubt you will. But the thing is, voting to force me to conform to your delusion is just inconsistent with your alleged philosophy of personal freedom. Or does 'freedom' only actually apply to you, to those you believe to be deserving of it and then it somehow warps into what you want from the rest of us?
Unfortunately, 'taking' cannot be defined as freedom. What it is, actually, is theft. It is also coercion (the use of force.) Initiating force against another, no matter how well intentioned, does not achieve peace, love, freedom or any other social goal. What it actually achieves is the creation of a counterforce. Also, it wastes tremendous amounts of energy to instigate and to resist, energy which could be much more profitably spent elsewhere, improving the standard of living of everyone in a modern culture like ours.
I can see how you would find politics a useful means for human engineering. All you need is the right person at the helm, one who agrees that we should all be forced to do what you think we should do and pay for what you think should be bought. There's a technical name for this too, it's called 'The Control Freak Syndrome,' also known as 'The Spoiled Brat.' There's hardly anything more unsightly. It is very unpleasant and dangerous to live with one of these animals at home. The effects on a grand scale are horrific. It's the reason why one foot of the American economy totters on the brink of economic disaster and the other is already firmly over thin air.
What's really happening here in America today is this scenario: voters think that there is a big Santa Claus who runs things. This Santa detached the dollar from the gold standard in order to keep the hollow gifts coming to the voters and the illusion going for the political and financial gain to the political class. Voters are blissfully ignorant of what that actually means. So long as the gifts keep coming, they'll keep voting and playing the childish game.
The printing presses down at the Fed have no attachment to reality at all. The U.S. Dollar is actually a 'faith based' currency. Our economy is based on the faith of the voting, unthinking, greedy, childish, moronic masses, who are even more detached than the currency. If you are on Santa's list (and believe you me--he's checking it twice) he'll bring gifts for the rest of us based on what you think we should have, because you're smarter than we are, more compassionate and caring and just plain better. Then everyone will live happily ever after! (At least until the credit bill comes due after the holidays.)
The term for this is 'sociopathic.' (Again from Wikipedia - 'recognizable by the disordered individual's impulsive behavior, disregard for social norms, and indifference to the rights and feelings of others.) My friend, you have become so obsessed with the perceived 'needs' and imagined 'solution' for the faceless, poverty-stricken masses, and so disconnected with problem resolution and basic math, that you completely disregard the rights and feelings of the rest of us, even those you would 'help.'
For someone who believes strongly in fair play, you must see that the use of force on the rest of us just isn't nice. There is virtually no difference between pointing a gun at someone else and demanding money or asking a bureaucrat to do it for you. Dictionary.com defines sociopath as someone who 'lacks a sense of moral responsibility' and 'a personality disorder marked by antisocial behavior.' Who can seriously argue that armed robbery, even if the mask used to disguise the perpetrator is an Uncle Sam hat, qualifies as sociopathic?
Giving a child, or a childish person, everything they want when they want it and the means to keep on doing what is not in their best interest, isn't actually nice, realistic or useful, especially not when it comes at the cost of the pursuit of happiness of everyone around him. It's disastrous. What is actually good and useful is to model for our children and for those around us that we are each solely responsible for our choices in life. It is good and useful to say 'no' to people who are pathologically parasitic, such as voters, bureaucrats and others who take advantage of a rigged gaming system. Every man for himself must experience the consequences, good or bad, of his own choices and adjust his future choices accordingly or he is doomed. It's called a learning model. The alternative leads only to an end no one wants to achieve.
The illusory 'free lunch' modus operandi under which we now function and have for over two generations only perpetuates delusion and suffering. There is but one end for it. Must we stay aboard this cultural and economic Titanic all the way to the bottom of the deep blue sea?
It's really quite simple. My fellows, I beg of you, before you create any more bad karma for yourselves, put down that sociopathic gun of coercion. Stop voting already! Use the brain you have and try something that at least does not defy logic. Read a simple book about the basics of supply and demand ' just because you don't understand economics doesn't mean that, like gravity or the laws of physics, it is not continuously at work. Teach someone to fish. Try anything--just don't keep doing the same thing over and over hoping for a different outcome because you're wasting your time and our resources, which, in the end, harms all of us, including poor people.