Friday, 12 May 2006

Cue Card Libertarianism - Welfarism

Welfarism: [n.] The Great New Zealand Disease; an affliction imbibed with Mother's Milk, incubated in the state's factory schools and released like a bacillus in humanities departments across the country. A mentality that assumes the following divine rights:
  1. the right to be kept alive at others’ expense;
  2. the right to abandon freely-chosen responsibilities at others’ expense;
  3. the right to have children at others’ expense;
  4. the right to have those children supported and educated at others’ expense;
  5. the right to health care and housing at others’ expense;
  6. the right to retirement income at others’ expense;
  7. the right to whatever else one feels like laying claim to, at others’ expense;
  8. the right, in pursuit of the above, to extract others’ earnings from them by force -- all the while proclaiming the evil of the pursuit of money;
  9. the right, in pursuit of the above, to tax the profitable -- all the while proclaiming the evil of profits.
The right, in short, to fleece the productive in order to placate and to fund the unproductive.

Welfarism divides humanity into two classes – beneficiaries and involuntary benefactors. For every beneficiary in New Zealand there are two involuntary benefactors. The number of beneficiaries rises in proportion to the eagerness of politicians to bribe voters with other people’s money. When the DPB was introduced in the 70s the number of people claiming it was in the hundreds, (and the amount spent was about $4million in today's money); it is now over a hundred thousand (and costs $2.8 billion per year, fifteen percent of the welfare budget). Welfarism feeds upon itself by paying people with dependent attitudes to have children who will grow up with the same dependent attitudes.

The ethics of Welfarism are an affront to the libertarian values of self-reliance, self-ownership and self-responsibility. Caring for those genuinely unable to fend for themselves – whose number in a free, no-tax, low-cost society would be nothing like a third of the population – is not a legitimate state function that should be effected forcibly: It is the legitimate private domain of those who freely choose to do it. As Thomas Mackay said in Methods of Social Reform:
We shall not get rid of pauperism by extending the sphere of state relief; on the contrary, its adoption would increase our pauperism, for, as is often said, we can have exactly as many pauper as the country choose to pay for.
Whether New Zealand will ever by cured of the disease of welfarism is a moot point. Its economic untenability is now widely recognised, but its moral untenability is not. State welfare is nothing less than moral cannibalism: the insistence at the point of a gun that Peter pay for Paul and Carol pay for Cathy -- something naturally for which Paul and Cathy are happy to express their support, when they can rouse themselves.

The sleazy advocates of institutionalised Welfarism are not for the most part motivated by the help they can do, but seek only the great boon of power for themselves through the charade of 'doing good' to others (and always at the expense of someone else). They have bequeathed instead only a helpless and hopeless under-class, while still having the gall to call themselves “humanitarians” -- a point on which they are only too seldom seriously challenged.

Part of a continuing series explaining the concepts and terms used by libertarians. Originally published in The Free Radical. The 'Introduction' to the series is here. The series so far is here.
LINKS: Cue Card Libertarianism - Not PC
TAGS: Cue_Card_Libertarianism, Libertarianism, Politics, Politics-NZ, Welfare


Icehawk said...

Once again, you treat children as chattels of their parents.

As things that should not be educated unless their parents can and will pay for it.

Psycho Milt said...

Isn't it a pain in the arse having fellow citizens? Some idiot gave the fuckers the vote and now they act as though we were all part of the same society or something.

Anonymous said...

Children are rather like chattel, to the extent that their rights come through their parents, who are completely responsible for them.

The educational system seems to be the fall back for anyone who feels the need to defend govt. welfare programs. Why? It is a bottomless money pit, which fails at everything but turning out government supporting myrmidons.

Public/Government education is not a right. It is a two-fold obligation. First, to the taxpayers who pay for it, regardless of whether or not their children attend, or if they even have children. Second, to the children who are obligated to attend, regardless of the quality.

My children however, do have a "right" to an education. This right is granted by the contract my husband & I signed with a privately run school and the money we pay each year.

Anonymous said...

PC said:
"the right to be kept alive at others’ expense"

I was on the dole for 4 months after coming out of varsity. I agree that individuals shoud stand on their own, but in situations like mine (as many other students), seeking wellfare till you get employment is a big help. In fact a friend of mine suggested that if I had continued rejection in my job applications, then there is always a job available in K'Rd (non-taxed). I told him thanks, very much but I prefered the Wellfare handout rather than standing in K'Rd every night with a wig hitching a ride.

Anonymous said...

There are plenty of jobs out there for recent grads while they are job hunting, they just have to have enough dignity and determination to do them. Waiting tables, running a cash register or working 2nd shift in a manufacturing plant might not be glamorous or even interesting, but it keeps you housed & fed while you send out CVs.

How many months of work were taxed to pay for your 4 months on the dole? And, by how many taxpayers? How many people worked a 2nd job, gave up time with their families & friends to pay their bills, all the while having a chunk of it taxed away for the 3, 4, or 6 months somebody else leisurely conducts their career planning?