Originally Posted by QBNCGAR
Right...I'm a middle-class white american male, so naturally, I'm the bad guy. It doesn't matter that when I had nothing, nobody "gave" me anything. It doesn't matter that I've made something of my life on my own. It doesn't matter that there's nothing special about me except for my drive and desire.
No....what matters is that I don't think listless degenerates without any sort of motivation should be "given to" with no strings attached. That's what matters. I embody the heartless right-wing conservatives that ostensibly will drive the country to ruin. I oppose programs like welfare that operate devoid of any accountability, making me the guy who is PERSONALLY taking a shit on "those that have the least among us". We whiteys, as a culture, are just a bunch of cruel, mean, elitist assholes.
Mac, you know that I respect you and that I enjoy engaging in discussions where we disagree. I don't find anything "libertarian" about the viewpoint that society is only as good as it treats the poorest among us. That is the siren song of bleeding heart liberalism. Liberalism doesn't work. If it did, we'd have whipped poverty about 20 years ago - we've poured billions and billions into programs that "give people fish", which simultaneously robs them of both the means and incentive to "fish for themselves", and we've held no-one accountable for the failures of these programs to reach their objectives.
If you're in fact over 50, then you're at least 20-years past the age where such convictions are meritorious.
I agree that you don't just pour good money after bad. I guess that I see programs that do "teach a man to fish..." and see good come from them and know that it can be done. One of the reasons that we have not "whipped poverty after pouring billions and billions into programs has been in some respects that it has been PROGRAMS that have been sent and not HELP. By that I mean that it is easy to take advantage of a program [I know businessmen who take advantage of tax breaks and get bigger cars/trucks than they normally would because they CAN under the program] where it is harder to take advantage of "one on one" or "one on several" help. It is easy for a person or government to write a check. It is harder to roll up the sleeves and help. I would prefer, and have fought for years to get, an incentive where volunteers go to areas and help by teaching budget, home ec, vocational ed, reading, etc to folks that need that and then get a "credit" on their taxes for that. That would provide real incentive for people to roll up their sleeves and help others, even a few hours a month. And no "real" money is spent.
Thinking more globally, "We are only as good as we treat those that have the least among us". A 59 year old friend of mine died in the plane crash yesterday. He was a Porsche guy but also an International Board of Director for Habitat for Humanity. He has traveled to 25 countries building houses and cleaning up damage. He was in Indonesia after the Tidal Wave and spent the last two months in La and Ms building housing after Katrina. He was flying back to Gulfport yesterday morning.
We tend to look at those who have little or nothing as being lazy or just not wanting to try or at some point in their life having made a bad decision. Or, we say that when we were down we did not get a handout so why should they. Both opinions deserve looks.
Some people are just lazy, some just gave up. That does happen. IN MY OPINION, it does not stop us from being the best person that we can be and I strongly believe that we are only as good as we treat those that have the least among us, both personally and as a society. That is how every society in history has been judged.
I know that my convictions won't get me metals. I got them when I was young. Now I have my convictions just for me. I find that much more rewarding.