Skip to comments.Ten Ways Progressive Policies Harm Society's Moral Character
Posted on 07/19/2011 8:13:43 AM PDT by Kaslin
While liberals are certain about the moral superiority of liberal policies, the truth is that those policies actually diminish a society's moral character. Many individual liberals are fine people, but the policies they advocate tend to make a people worse. Here are 10 reasons:
1. The bigger the government, the less the citizens do for one another. If the state will take care of me and my neighbors, why should I? This is why Western Europeans, people who have lived in welfare states far longer than Americans have, give less to charity and volunteer less time to others than do Americans of the same socioeconomic status.
The greatest description of American civilization was written in the early 19th century by the Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville. One of the differences distinguishing Americans from Europeans that he most marveled at was how much Americans -- through myriad associations -- took care of one another. Until President Franklin Roosevelt began the seemingly inexorable movement of America toward the European welfare state -- vastly expanded later by other Democratic presidents -- Americans took responsibility for one another and for themselves far more than they do today. Churches, Rotary Clubs, free-loan societies and other voluntary associations were ubiquitous. As the state grew, however, all these associations declined. In Western Europe, they have virtually all disappeared.
2. The welfare state, though often well intended, is nevertheless a Ponzi scheme. Conservatives have known this for generations. But now, any honest person must acknowledge it. The welfare state is predicated on collecting money from today's workers in order to pay for those who paid in before them. But today's workers don't have enough money to sustain the scheme, and there are too few of them to do so. As a result, virtually every welfare state in Europe, and many American states, like California, are going broke.
3. Citizens of liberal welfare states become increasingly narcissistic. The great preoccupations of vast numbers of Brits, Frenchmen, Germans and other Western Europeans are how much vacation time they will have and how early they can retire and be supported by the state.
4. The liberal welfare state makes people disdain work. Americans work considerably harder than Western Europeans, and contrary to liberal thought since Karl Marx, work builds character.
5. Nothing more guarantees the erosion of character than getting something for nothing. In the liberal welfare state, one develops an entitlement mentality -- another expression of narcissism. And the rhetoric of liberalism -- labeling each new entitlement a "right" -- reinforces this sense of entitlement.
6. The bigger the government, the more the corruption. As the famous truism goes, "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Of course, big businesses are also often corrupt. But they are eventually caught or go out of business. The government cannot go out of business. And unlike corrupt governments, corrupt businesses cannot print money and thereby devalue a nation's currency, and they cannot arrest you.
7. The welfare state corrupts family life. Even many Democrats have acknowledged the destructive consequences of the welfare state on the underclass. It has rendered vast numbers of males unnecessary to females, who have looked to the state to support them and their children (and the more children, the more state support) rather than to husbands. In effect, these women took the state as their husband.
8. The welfare state inhibits the maturation of its young citizens into responsible adults. As regards men specifically, I was raised, as were all generations of American men before me, to aspire to work hard in order to marry and support a wife and children. No more. One of the reasons many single women lament the prevalence of boy-men -- men who have not grown up -- is that the liberal state has told men they don't have to support anybody. They are free to remain boys for as long as they want.
And here is an example regarding both sexes. The loudest and most sustained applause I ever heard was that of college students responding to a speech by President Barack Obama informing them that they would now be covered by their parents' health insurance policies until age 26.
9. As a result of the left's sympathetic views of pacifism and because almost no welfare state can afford a strong military, European countries rely on America to fight the world's evils and even to defend them.
10. The leftist (SET ITAL) weltanschauung (END ITAL) sees society's and the world's great battle as between rich and poor rather than between good and evil. Equality therefore trumps morality. This is what produces the morally confused liberal elites that can venerate a Cuban tyranny with its egalitarian society over a free and decent America that has greater inequality.
None of this matters to progressives. Against all this destructiveness, they will respond not with arguments to refute these consequences of the liberal welfare state, but by citing the terms "social justice" and "compassion," and by labeling their opponents "selfish" and worse.
If you want to feel good, liberalism is awesome. If you want to do good, it is largely awful.
Excellent points by Prager.
I’ve thought that the “baby mama” culture of the inner cities is a major threat to all of us. Reason being, the feral children of the baby mamas, raised without fathers, run wild. Too many grow up to become uncivilized savages.
60 years ago, the vast majority of black children were raised in intact traditional families. Today, 70% of black babies are born out of wedlock. Almost 40% of all babies are born out of wedlock today. That cancer is seeping into the mainstream culture.
So, if we can’t properly raise the next generation, how will the culture survive?
There was a time in this country when a girl who got pregnant without a husband couldn’t just go on public assistance.
I’m not saying that “shotgun” weddings and homes for unwed mothers were a great solution to the problem, but, are we really better off now, that we directly subsidize baby mamas and their irresponsible boyfriends?
And has the problem grown to such a critical mass that it will overwhelm us? Between the high divorce rate and the high rate of out of wedlock births, the majority of children raised today are not raised in intact families. Critical masses not being raised with appropriate standards and values, which happens all too often in these baby mama homes, negatively affects the entire society.
And how many welfare people vote Democrat out of fears of Republicans taking away their benefits? There’s a political component to this also.
Excellent question. However, once they realize that is is the democrats that are keeping them dependent on the government, things could change
1. The welfare state removes the link between an action and its natural consequence.
In the case of out-of-wedlock births, the consequence of having a child outside of marriage would normally be raising that child without financial help. But with the welfare state, the woman who has a child outside of marriage ends up better off financially.
Careful, or Whoopi Goldberg is going to yell at you!
Like Prager says, women look to the government for support, men are not held accountable for their behavior.
The result is a massive social safety net administered by the government to care for these people. Unwinding this safety net will take generations. Since we do not have the money to do this much longer, the implication is social chaos when the money runs out. How this manifests is anyone’s guess.
Insightful article! Thanks for posting it. BTW, I always appreciate the articles you post. You are the best!
Prager does an extremely thoughtful show. Too bad he is on opposite Rush.