Filed under: Capitalism, Conservatism, Economy, Freedom, Liberalism, The United States | Tags: Individual Freedom, It Isn't Fair!, Self-Reliance
That makes a nice juxtaposition with an essay on “The ABC’s of Self-Reliance” at City Journal by Stefan Kanfer.
[O]n October 26, ABC News: “At a million-dollar San Francisco fundraiser today, President Obama warned his recession-battered supporters that if he loses the 2012 election it could herald a new painful era of self-reliance in America.” Actually, what the president said was this: in the event he was not reelected, “If you lose your job you’re on your own, if you get sick, you’re on your own.” It was the ABC writers and editors who took it upon themselves to introduce “self-reliance” as a pejorative.
It all begins with the plaintive whine of a child “It isn’t fair!”And of course, it isn’t fair. Like your mother said —”Life isn’t fair.” Liberalism rests on the idea that somehow government should make things fair, as the only entity big enough and powerful enough to do so. The Occupiers apparently believed that corporations and banks were the ones who made life unfair, and if we just shut down the banks and the corporations then …what? Dunno.
Daniel Hannan said it most clearly. Those who rant “about fairness don’t mean equal treatment or justice, or, indeed any practical outcome whatsoever. What they really mean is that they’re nice people, and they’re prepared to prove how nice they are with your money.”
There is no end point to the liberal aim, nothing can ever be solved, fairness will never arrive. There is always more. That is why the Founders offered as eternal truth that “all men are created equal, and that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, and among those are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” That is all that they can guarantee us, and we have governments to try to protect those basic rights. Beyond that, you have to depend on that pejorative — self-reliance. How is it possible, even for liberals, to think that self-reliance is a bad thing. Being able to take care of yourself. Do they think that creativity and invention are attributes of layabouts on the dole?
Well, yes, they do.
And that, you see, is the real problem. This week former speaker Nancy Pelosi announced that at the top of her priority list would be “doing for childcare what we did for healthcare reform.” If encouraging people to be layabouts on the dole, was an incentive for entrepreneurship, then “unleashing women” in a way that would boost the economy, she says, “this is a missing link.”
Come to think of it, wasn’t it Nancy Pelosi who claimed that the best way to create jobs was to extend unemployment benefits?