What’s Wrong With Wanting to Promote Individual Liberty?

I was walking down town the other day, looking for a spot to grab a quick bit of lunch, when I ran into my old friend, Johnny. He asked, “Did you see the news? Our president won the Nobel peace prize!”

I gasped rather noisily. Johnny asked, “you ok?”

“Sure, Johnny, I’m fine. What did you say about the prize?”

“I can’t believe it either, but it’s a sign to conservatives in this country to get in line with our great president’s, and the world’s, agenda. That’s for sure!”

I had to ask him, why he thought this was necessary or even good for our nation and those living in it. A world wide agenda designed to create equality does not necessarily create favorable outcomes. “What do you mean it doesn’t create ‘favorable outcomes?'” He air quoted that last part. I explained that by drafting and passing legislation designed to create expensive entitlements, entitlements that would eventually need to be paid for with taxation, they were creating an environment of diminished liberty.

“But Bush was a fascist!” Woe, Johnny, woe! What made Bush a fascist? “Well, he just was. He stomped all over the constitution by lying about a war and people died! And that made us lose our rights, like freedom of speech and stuff!”

Wait, we lost our rights? There aren’t many examples of this situation, I’m sure because I’ve not seen any laws produced or evidence that this has occurred. If it has, please let me know. Opposition was rarely denounced by the administration or by any members of Congress, so I’m not sure how any free speech was stifled. The issue here, Johnny is what I mean by diminished liberty, and how this administration deals with the rights you were so concerned about under the Bush administration.

In order to pay for the entitlements that I mentioned earlier, our government (left and right politicians are guilty of this) must reduce our right to the fruits of our labor, our property if you will, our money, in the form of heavy taxes. This burden more often than not will fall on the moneyed, wealthy class; the folks that provide jobs, drive innovation, and have the money to invest in future growth. The more you earn the more you pay. This encourages the wealthy to limit their earnings in an effort to curb their tax burden. With poorer individuals, it is also in their best interest to limit the amount of money they earn in order to ensure they maintain their entitlement benefits.

Keeping individuals on the dole allows for them to create an environment of reliance on the government, while government grow ever so slowly in order to cater to that new found need.

Johnny screamed, “Liar! They would never do to our liberties what Bush did! They care about people!”

And so do conservatives, it’s just that their principles encourage individuals to go out and work hard to attempt to make it for themselves, but when they don’t make it they should rely on the charity of other individuals, churches, and groups that are privately owned and operated to pick up the slack and give people a hand. It should never be the government’s role to do these things, as they will be done inefficiently, will expand the role and scope of government in society and create a life that will not be worth living as property rights are diminished in an effort to collect more taxes. In that case, wealth creation is a burden.

And Johnny, individual liberty has more to do with making a go of it and failing than being guaranteed a good home, a hot meal, and a job by the government. It sounds nice, but breeds a situation of equal misery.

Both parties in this country are as guilty as can be of statist tendencies, their speed and outright efforts are just a little different.

“Huh?” Johnny asked blankly. “You’re getting that hate filled diatribe from Fox News! Your hating, hater, hate speechiness!”

What are you talking about Johnny? Where’s the debate my friend?

Johnny walked away screaming.