Selfish Conservatives: 19 of the 20 Most Charitable States Voted for Romney

10 Comments on “Selfish Conservatives: 19 of the 20 Most Charitable States Voted for Romney”

  1. swo8 says:

    Charity is just a feel good exercise for the greedy. In a real world, where there was a little more equity, you wouldn’t need charity because everyone would have enough. That is what is behind a lot of the discord in todays news.

    • The Butcher says:

      Only in utopian or socialist or fascist fantasy is there a magical fairy tale world where “you wouldn’t need charity”. It never existed, it never will. Inequality is part of the human condition. Charity is a virtue that can’t be replaced by force, taxation, and redistribution. The U.S. has spent 7-10 Trillion on poverty programs, welfare, public assistance, etc., and the poverty rate is unchanged. There is no policy, no ideology, that can cure ‘inequality’. Society has a moral obligation to take care of its poor and needy. Left to their own, without forced intervention by State, people are generous, and step up to that obligation.

      When there are global disasters, and help is needed, the people of the U.S. are by far the most generous earth–voluntarily–and give more than any of the other developed nations, who have the resources, but decline to give when help is needed.

      I would put more faith in the natural goodness and charity of the average American than I would any self-interested, faceless, wasteful, corrupt bureaucracy.

      There’s a reason there isn’t a “Statue of Equality”.

      • swo8 says:

        I wager that you aren’t old enough to remember that there were better times when the government made policies that were directly responsible for a more equitable society. Sure you will never totally eliminate poverty but what is happening now is off shore manufacturing and Foreign Worker Programs that strip most North Americans of any sort of employment. I agree that the North American people are charitable to the extreme, but most people don’t want charity, they want decent jobs and careers.

      • The Butcher says:

        Well, you might lose that wager. Unlike many of our readers, I’m old enough to remember when LBJ was president. Perhaps you are, too. Or perhaps not.

        And there is no person no matter what age that lived in any time in America where a ‘more equitable society’ was “directly due” to government policies.

        This is the folly of believing that wealth, poverty, or equitable income is the domain of the federal government in the first place.

        Average people and their local governments are better suited to address these needs. Local governments are A. More accountable, and B. can’t print money.

        Federal poverty programs interrupted already declining poverty, then made poverty permanent. Note: my previous figure (7-10 trillion) was incorrect. Over 50 years, it’s 22 trillion. It’s one of the most tragic mistakes of the 20th century,

        The trillions of out dollars spent by federal agencies to make society more fair and equitable have have caused more suffering, have done more lasting harm, and have bred more inequality than simply leaving them alone, and letting society manage it without government intervention.

        Federal programs are primarily about political patronage, elections, and permanent job security for an ever-expanding pool or federal administrators, paid for by an ever-shrinking pool of private sector workers.

        If LBJ had done exactly nothing to address poverty, we’d be a more equitable nation, and 22 trillion dollars richer.

        Today’s item has charts

      • swo8 says:

        I remember when John Diefenbaker was Prime Minister. I wouldn’t expect the government to equalize society. They try to do that here in Canada. It shows very poor results. However, having had a small business in this country, (a while ago) the government doesn’t make it easy or likely to succeed based upon its policies. We are a branch plant economy and not masters in our own country. If you’re not big business you are disposable.

      • The Butcher says:

        Big organizations have a lot in common — both government, and corporate — they concentrate power, tend to be protectionist, and are less accountable than their smaller, more flexible counterparts.

        I agree, policies that benefit big businesses and disfavor or harm small businesses are short-sighted, and unfair.

        Contrary to popular perception, there are fewer super-large corporations than there were in in the 20th century, when an IBM-sized company employed skyscrapers full of people. Now large ones employ thousands, or at most, tens of thousands. An example of a 21st century corporation is eBay, or Even Facebook or Microsoft doesn’t have hundreds of thousands of employees.

        The soul of the economy: small business owners. Small business suffer more from regulation and policy than big business does. Big businesses have the economic and political clout to seek protection and favors from government, and are more accountable to stockholders than they are their own people.

        Currently the U.S. is more socialist, debt-ridden, and protectionist than Canada. Our policies in the last 6 years (more if we count Bush) have contributed to increased federal dependence, cronyism, inequality, and debt.

        In the 1990s Canada took responsible, politically difficult (and ultimately successful) steps to deal with deficits and debts. and perhaps entitlements, too. Debt reduction measures benefited the economy, and improved stability, going forward. That impressed me. The solutions may be imperfect, but at least they weren’t chronically postponed.

        The U.S. hasn’t taken those steps. Political cowardice, the public’s failure to make leaders accountable, and predictable political and bureaucratic dysfunction has prevented what should have been confronted, dealt with, and resolved a generation ago.

        At least during the Clinton years, welfare reform was accomplished, with bipartisan compromises. The economy was stronger.

        The welfare reforms of the Clinton era have been rolled back, by the Obama administration, and now the number of food stamp dependents are at historic highs.

        It’s rare to hear young people talk about wanting to start a business, or be their own boss.

      • swo8 says:

        What we are sadly lacking is a good statesman. There are still some good people out there. We just need to get them into office.

      • The Butcher says:

        Though ‘good statesmen’ certainly are preferable to bad ones, even bad statesmen respond to incentives.

        If the incentives weren’t designed to promote and benefit the political class at the expense of the public, even a bad or mediocre politician will do less harm.

        I agree, better statesmanship. Elect better candidates, stop electing bad ones.

        But I’m inclined to think we’re putting too much faith in elected officials in the first place.

        What we’d like to see even more is a public that doesn’t look to elected officials, or government, to solve their problems, or take care of their needs, but instead, do those things themselves. Individually, or in groups, communities, and civic institutions.

        It’s a radical idea, but it’s how the system was originally designed. Free people solving problems uninterrupted, unmolested. Government as the absolute last resort.

        The duty is to do only those things that absolutely can’t be done otherwise.

        The list of what government is given power to do are necessarily limited, in order to be functional:

        A law enforcement/justice system. The duty to defend and protect the borders. The duty to protect individual rights & protect private property. The duty to manage foreign policy. That’s it. Those are the only legitimate powers originally given by the people to the federal government.

        Otherwise we sacrifice individual rights, and create very attractive and enriching criminal incentives. The rest is pandering, vote-buying, and mission creep.

      • swo8 says:

        Well stated!

  2. Lorra B. says:

    I totally agree with The Butcher on this one… Give a person a fish and they will eat for a day; teach that same person to fish and they will live for a lifetime… Financial equality is a great, in theory. With trillions spent on this very endeavor, we are not one step closer. Put more money into a failing system? I think not… IMHO…

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