My recent link on Anthony Bourdain got me to thinking (NOT a good thing at 3am), so here I sit at the computer. Having watched many of Bourdain’s travel/cooking shows, I know that he’s a well travelled, well educated fellow. Sadly, neither travel nor education can give a person common sense if they don’t want it, thus Bourdain remains the eastern white liberal that he recently lambasted.
Like Bourdain, many liberals KNOW that liberalism (socialism/communism) doesn’t work. It’s failed miserably in every nation that’s tried it, Russia, China, North Korea, Venezuela recently, and some other scattered nations. It always leads to bad economies, tyranny and genocide. Yet they persist in spouting their hatred of all things free market or capitalistic. I believe that’s because they lack even the most basic understanding of how an economy works and of human nature.
The first thing that most folks can’t grasp is that a vibrant society has to contain a certain amount of poverty. That sounds cruel, but it’s true. Without poverty, there’s no incentive to better ourselves, thus no-one would try. Poverty is relative, of course, but there can’t be a society where everyone has what they want, or the economy would stagnate.
Let’s suppose that the liberal’s dream has been realized and we are ALL rich beyond belief with whatever substance is used to gauge wealth, gold for instance. We would have just made everyone completely destitute. HOW, you ask? Because it’s SCARCITY that makes anything valuable. If everyone has acres of gold, then gold would then be useless in determining wealth. We would have to find a new basis for wealth and thus a new medium of exchange. It might be oil, wheat, chicken soup, ammunition or anything else. But we would all be poor until such a time as the new economy, based on that substance, is put into place. Thus, making everyone financially equal would devastate the economy until it adjusted.
Another thing, if everyone really COULD be wealthy, who would do the work in society? NO-ONE would do the crappy jobs! Having alluded to the subject indirectly, who would clean America’s toilets if everyone was financially equal? Homeowners MIGHT clean their own, but what about public toilets? (Think parks and such.) No-one would be willing to work, so the filth would build to unbelievable levels. There would be no need to worry about toilets in the workplace, since no-one would be working (remember, there would be NO economy).
Now, let’s add a small dose of reality. All men (and women) are NOT created equal. Yes, it makes good rhetoric for government speeches and documents, but it’s a lie, IF you insist on taking it literally. All the founders really wanted was a system where everyone had the same opportunity to prosper and be free of government chains. (Yes, that was during the days of slavery, but that’s a whole OTHER subject.) Since we don’t all have the same education, the same raising, the same intelligence or the same set of skills, our “equality” comes from our willingness to think harder, work harder, or develop new skills to make up the difference.
Another thing, it’s been said that if you took everyone’s money, divided it equally and gave it back, within a year, the rich would once again be rich, and the poor would once again be poor. I don’t know about the time period, but I can assure you that the rest is true, especially the poor returning to poverty. No better example exists than the fact that many lottery winners eventually end up poorer than they were before they won. On the other side of the coin, those who understand how to accumulate wealth would simply start anew and soon be back where they were.