By Malcolm Campbell
From the Preamble of the US Constitution –
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
In my progressive contemplations and debates I would hang my hat on the word promote as justification for the social welfare state as we know it and the congress’ authority to tax and redistribute as it sees fit in support of the marginal and downtrodden.
I got over that. Heres how;
Promote and provide are not the same.
Provide is to performance as promote is to perception.
Let me synthesize this though my work experience. Readers know me as a tile guy. I lay tile for a living. I am a tile contractor.
I get a contract to do tile work. It says “provide tile work and promote job site cleanliness.” These requirements mean different things.
I am on the hook for tile, but not job site cleanliness. The Owner may request I pick up a bit but I am only really subject to my own mess (personal responsibility). My warranty and workmanship are on the tile work not the job site cleanliness.
Cleanliness is ephemeral at best. Much like welfare, Cleanliness is non durable, it is consumed at once, and you can never have too much of it. In general a professional workman will only invest in cleanliness to the extent it benefits him. Benefits accrue in terms of safety and the image he wishes to project both to his fellows on the job (for the sake of harmony) and his customer (for the sake of future business). Promotion here stems from the belief that one’s cleanliness leads to good will among other trades, and word of mouth among the client base.
How does this relate to Mother (Russia) ‘Merica? It seems to me that Promotion is misconstrued for provision. That the government is equally and separably liable for defense as it is for social welfare, in-as-much as Dems expect $1 defense cut for every $1 cut from other essential services. But the desire fails this simple test, When the devil is at the door do you make sure grams gets her meds before or after you dismiss the devil? or When on a plane and the air masks are deployed do you strap on yours first kids second, or the other way around?
We don’t yet live in dark times where choices such as these must be made. But the course of human progress is not linear. We sometimes have to go backward to go forward again. These are those times. When the lion is hungry, you slay the lion. No brainer. Defense precedes welfare. Are you with me this far?
Now then, I think it would be better to admit just how much the current 100 year long social welfare experiment has so far separated the individual from his role to actually provide for his own and or his fellows welfare. Or the role that government has to foster ideas which motivate citizens toward self sufficiency. Welfare and social spending have become no ones problem, and everyone’s all at the same time. Meanwhile we are all progressively impoverished through fiat taxation to keep up appearances that cash benefits are real. No one benefits save the entitled and the elites.
As the government grows, all localized and private avenues for social welfare are crowded out. We are at the point where not a man could imagine a substitute for Mother Russia it seems impossible that private groups and selfish and self-centered individuals would step into the void to champion the marginalized. How could they? All wealth is taxed away – and what remains diluted through ponzi finance.
That fabric of the US, the cloth that once stood in the breach is now gone. What we have left is an increasingly politicized and polarized net, save the safety. Yet at the same time as the burden to pay is placed higher and higher up the margin of producers more and more see no point in busting ass for what can be had by doing less. Case in point the recent PA State welfare report that indicates a single mom of two is indifferent to the amount of her disposable income between gross earnings of $29k and $69k. In fact there are several benefit cliffs between these that cause making marginally more than $29k less attractive.
This is wrong.
This is a case study on how not to promote general welfare. This is a case of how to promote do-nothing near-do-wells.
I’ll leave it there for now. But in my next post, provided you share your thoughts below, I will offer an alternative approach to providing for the general Welfare. Hint, I am promoting your input.