Freedom, the cure for poverty 8

 

(Video and title from PowerLine)

Posted under Commentary, Economics, liberty, United States, Videos by Jillian Becker on Monday, July 2, 2012

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This post has 8 comments.

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  • Rossaduc

    No more good than the next person, maybe I have learned that bad really does not get you anywhere in life in the long haul. Maybe I have learned that all that shit we carry around with us all of our lives can be taken away in an instant and thus should be looked at as the baggage it really is. But still enjoy it while you can still breath just do not hold on to hard. Maybe I have learned that it does not matter what conservative atheists or their polar opposites think, maybe what they do matters more. Maybe I have learned to assume less, watch my back, and maybe if I show a little kindness when I do not have to,  that someone else may do the same, not for me but for someone else. And maybe I do not want anything in return, and maybe I do not even think this makes me a better person than anyone else because all of those little kindnesses do not matter much if you are a failure at some of the bigger stuff. And maybe I wonder as all who struggle with the idea of god or the lack of it, that we are little beings on a small planet in a very small corner of the universe as we can grasp it, maybe there is something else, and maybe I am just a man and can barely grasp it or see it. So maybe I should assume I know alot less than I do. And maybe i am just a little suspicious of folks who think they have a nice neat philosophy of life when there does not seem to be that much neatness or black and white in the world. We are all both good and bad. And maybe I just don’t care to be defined. We exploit this planet, waste is all around us, instead of fighting windmills why dont you really do something to minimize that.  Pity is a natural emotion? It is? Define it. I can not say I have felt it often in my life.
    Swines? You are kidding of course. I feel no such strong emotion. I suspect I am speaking to an intelligent person who has strong feelings about this. I am not an especially good person and never thought of you as a swine or in need of any forgiveness. What I do and my philosophy. I could care less if you share it, understand it, abhor it, I feel no superiority about it either. I have come to those feelings not by any study but by being tossed around both by my own misdeeds and misfortune and the opposite. I would claim it as a success if I had planned any of it. I have only wanted one thing to live and to be free, but a freedom I have long since given up as being possible within the confines of normal society so I find it in small ways on my own, brief moments of freedom. I believe the social contract is like all things between men a compromise accomplished by committee, I do not expect alot. I hope to be left alone as much as I can be. But I participate in that compromise as it is all there is. Not goingto throw out the baby with the bathwater because it is an imperfect thing.

    • Jillian Becker

      With lots of what you say here I am in sympathy. Especially the wanting to be free. But why did you assume that we are hard types who’ll never give anything to anyone and haven’t an ounce of kindness in us because we lack “soul”? 

      I don’t agree with your bit about the planet. 

      May I remind you that you have no idea what any of us are doing about anything? You are still making (rather unkind) assumptions about us. 

      • Rossaduc

        OK, I do not know what any of us, who is us? are doing about anything. WHat are you doing about anything? I would not presume you have no ” soul” as you are here debating these issues so to do so requires what I would call “soul” which I agree is a bit of a tenuous term, meaning it is some undefinable esssence I think so don’t expect me to defend the concept. Anyway I am not even sure who I am talking to let alone what I am talking about. 🙂  Oh my out, I did say “I suppose” so is all forgiven?
        You do not think we are exploiting the planet to the point of potential harm? I agree the current bit on global warming flies in the face of what anyone might know about geologic time, meaning 50 -100 years is no trend in the life of the planet. We are trying to change but I sometimes am frustrated at how slow when it is about economics. And unfortunately Big Brother government is the best mechanism to effect some large scale change.
        On all the rest I just responded to your comments. Unfairly, perhaps, but more some give and take and getting a feel for each’s position, counterpoint perhaps. Nothing wrong with that. Would you rather simply talk to someone who agrees with everything or simply gets what you are saying with no discussion? That would be sort of boring I think.
        And I am not sure what a troll is? Someone who baits? Looking for a bite as in fishing for trouble? That is not what I am doing.

  • Rossaduc

    Seems to me this ignores the fact that there are countries that redistribute wealth and have no where near the poverty the US has. Poverty is defined by government alone? Come on, as if that definition has no grounding in reality, seems to me those definitions do come close to “you know it when you see it.” This also ignores the fact that so much wealth is based on the exploitation of natural resources. Since one could say that those natural resources do in fact belong to the people some of that redistribution is natural. Or should be. What it also seems to ignore is that alot of handouts are not actually handouts at all, is Social Security a handout, these programs are more like insurance where all or most contribute so that there is a safety net when it is needed, just like insurance, call it social insurance. Of course in this sort of arrangement there will always be some folks who get more than they paid in and others get nothing for what they paid in but assurance the net is there. I would think this is the true nature of most social programs. Again the question is balance and efficiency. To say a lack of efficiency is the grounds to abandon the idea is sort of like saying my car does not get good gas mileage so I think I will start only walking.
    If there was no priviledge, meaning folks who had wealth they did not earn I might be able to agree with some of this. But we do know some folks have advantage through no effort of their own and some are born into circumstances thay may have a hard time overcoming. Nothing in life is fair. Social justice is about trying to make it a little better which almost always means taking from the top to give to the bottom. Whether we are talking about nationally or globally. Those that do not want to share will always make these sorts of arguments. Sounds like greed to me. I suppose charity being a religious concept would not fit in an atheist conservative model of the world. There is nothing in it for the souless individual but a loss of some material wealth. But for someone with soul perhaps they get something in return for charity, if nothing more than the idea they made things better for someone else.
    “Part African” , one might say that most of us are part something. Still we call white folks caucasian though many whites in America have some black in their ancestry. If this does not smack of racism I do not know what else to call it. What Obama is now not black enough to be called black. Silliest thing I have ever heard and to put it on a website that pretends to be elitist/smart is a joke. I suppose now we should challenge all blacks to prove they are black enough by some agreed upon percentage. We could do the same thing for whites, but that would get complicated, maybe we should just not worry about it and just accept we are all human of varying shades of brown. 🙂

    • Jillian Becker

      We would like America and all the world to be colorblind when it comes to human beings.  

      Our views on Social Security are to be found in these articles. (Put the titles in our search slot.)
      The national Ponzi scheme
      Against God and Socialism 
      Dependency
      An existential choice

      As for pity, or compassion, we see an awful lot of condescension in compassion, and an awful lot of contempt in condescension. No doubt pitying other people makes the pitier feel good, but is abases them. Pity is a natural emotion of course, but it should not be used as an excuse for Christian or Socialist self-congratulation.   

      “Social justice” is unjust. It requires the State to take money away from those who’ve earned it and give it to those who haven’t.

      • Rossaduc

        So we should throw away compassion because it has some measure of humanities weakness in it. We should wait for compassion to be pure before we act on it. Truth be told, the idea I was hungry and you gave me food. Somehow I do not think the hungry felt abased, maybe they simply felt less hungry. Pity or there but by the grace of god or some other force in the universe go I. Or perhaps recognizing where you might have been just a short time ago. Compassion does not have to be about pity, it can be about recognition of the bounds that tie us together, a common experience. I was hungry yesterday, I share what I have with another who is hungry today. Pity has nothing to do with it. Christianity has nothing to do with it, socialist agenda has nothing to do with it. being human I would think does. Social justice does not have to have anything to do with the government either. Seems in many cases it is if anything at odds with the governement in many places around the planet. And many social justice issues have only a little if anything to do with the economics of taxation. Now if you really want to debate, the idea that all money is earned and thus should not be taken away. That is an interesting concept that has too many exceptions to count.

        • Jillian Becker

          Okay, so you’ve thoroughly advertised what a good person you are. And you’ve made it clear that those of us who don’t do the same are swines. But you will of course forgive us and turn the other cheek, won’t you?  

    • C.Gee

      “I suppose charity being a religious concept would not fit in an atheist conservative model of the world. There is nothing in it for the souless individual but a loss of some material wealth. But for someone with soul perhaps they get something in return for charity, if nothing more than the idea they made things better for someone else.” 

      So, if I understand you, the model of the soul economy would be that waste generated by inefficient  public benefit programs is to be recycled as social justice? The greedy rich and the envious poor are then in soul equilibrium: the rich produce charity (and patriotism) in their taxes and the poor consume them.  But is this sustainable?  Is the feeling that you have made things better for someone else equal to the feeling that you have given someone the opportunity of feeling good by giving you charity? I myself, as a relatively poor person, resent the rich  feeling good about themselves for making things better for someone else.  Their self-satisfaction is cheap. As a relatively rich person, I resent the growing number of poor and their rich enablers who think that they are benefitting my soul by forcing me to pay for someone else. My self-satisfaction is expensive. Of course, the perfect citizen would be the widow who gives her mite. Society will be truly socially just, with a huge gross national soul product, when we are all widows with a mite, desperately seeking widows without a mite to give our mites to.  Where is she?  Should she be allowed to accept the mites and allow the other widows to feel good about themselves?  Opinion is divided. The Department of Mites (the sole department of government) will have to balance the danger to her soul from the potential for achieving greater material wealth against the benefit for social justice and the greater gross public good feeling at giving her charity.  As an answer to this dilemma, some have proposed that the Widow Without Mite be an official position. The office-holder is the recipient of Mites in trust, permitting every one to be equally charity givers and receivers.  The Widow Without Mite will be  sovereign.