New American Issues Project Column: “It’s Not Fair”

I’ve been thinking about the root cause of this bail-out mess and the changes in our American culture. My column at AIP today sums up my thinking about things:

America, in general, and our government in particular, has been consuming more calories than it can afford and grown fat, and rather than cut back, has sought salvation by those who were responsible and by those who lived within their means.

Some who let things get away from themselves have cut back and “tightened the belt”. The government, though, seems willfully obstinate about making such challenging choices itself. President Obama put forth scorn-worthy “cuts” in the face of mammoth governmental pigging out. An already obese government is making itself morbidly huge over the next ten years. One wonders if the patient can be saved or if it will end up in a piano box and buried in the ash heap of indulgent world-power history.

And this all began as someone trying to correct an unfairness. It’s unfair that some people have health insurance and others don’t. It’s unfair that one person eats Filet Mignon and another person eats hamburger helper. It’s unfair that one person gets to drive a souped-up SUV and another person rides the bus. It’s unfair that one person has a mansion and another person has a trailer. It’s unfair that one person gets to go to Harvard and another person goes to a technical college. It’s unfair that more boys than girls are engineers. And on and on it goes.

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It’s unfair. It’s unfair. It’s unfair.

So, a man who promised to make things fair got elected President. It’s not fair that America is the lone superpower. It’s not fair that there are rich and poor people. It’s not fair that “rich” people get tax breaks. The government then, will be a tool for “fairness”.

It never works out that way. Like Scar’s alliances and forced “teamwork” between natural adversaries, fairness results in depletion, loss of incentive and many more unintended consequences. Moreover, it’s a fundamentally angry and aggrieved way to look at the world.

More here.

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