Sunday, 28 April 2013

Welfare and Taxes

The subject of welfare and benefits is one that is particularly divisive in the field of the politics, and sadly one where polarised black and white thinking is preferred over nuanced debate. The fact of the matter is simple: forcing someone to hand over their money against their will is a violation of human rights. Human beings have a right to their own private property, and the right to the fruits of their own labour. Taking these things from another by force or threat of violence is theft. Given that such things are basic human rights, to deny these rights to individuals simply because they have more than others reflects nothing other than envy, and is immoral. If you sincerely wished to help the poor and needy, then you would do it yourself. As an act of charity has to be intentional and voluntary if it is to be meaningful. Furthermore, trusting a group of individuals to distribute your money effectively is the height of irrationality, when such individuals are just as fallible as everybody else. Either though incompetence, or dishonesty, it is not up to a group of officials to decide who does and does not get money. In today's Western societies, such money does not just help the poor, ill, and disabled, but has also become a lifeline for hardworking and able bodied individuals, since they can scarcely afford to survive due to government control, manipulation, intervention, and regulation of the market. Furthermore, there are those who commit fraud to obtain such money, as small as this group may be. There are those who wilfully do nothing to get out of their situation, and there are more still who wish to improve their situation but cannot due to government red tape. I have to ask proponents of welfare, is this a situation they really want? A system where government can manipulate markets in order to trap people on welfare in poverty?

I assume, of course, that such an opinion will prove to be unpopular amongst Guardianistas, and others who presume to know what is best for others, reason and logic be damned. I also assume that Daily Mail readers will be agreeing with me so far. I shall now give nuance to my previous statements, and this will be a test to see who read past the first paragraph, and to see who amongst my readers have good reading comprehension skills. Despite my previous statements, it would nonetheless be immoral to immediately dismantle the welfare state in its entirety. The reason for this is because there are many dependent on such a system, due to the machinations of an oppressive state. If the economy were not in such bad shape, many people would not need government assistance. However, Western economy is a government-directed centrally planned one, and so, for that reason, many people are trapped in poverty due to wage and price setting. If we are to help these people, we must reform the economy first. We must slowly scale back the size and scope of government, and undo the damage caused by the disastrous economic policies imposed upon us. Only then can we think about scaling back welfare. Welfare itself must also be gradually reformed too. We could start by taking out a lot of government red tape, reducing the levels of bureaucracy.

Ultimately, though, the end goal would be to reach a level where we could get rid of welfare, without dooming thousands of citizens to poverty and, in some cases, death. As with the concept of a stateless society, if this is not achievable, then the next best step would be a minimal welfare system only for the poor and needy. Limiting the size of government, of course, would also mean limiting funds for welfare. Many on the left would no doubt be furious over such a suggestion, but large government, aside from being antithetical to human freedom and economic stability, also means higher taxes. It is well known that those on the left feel as if those with more wealth and possessions should be forced to give a substantial amount away to the government, whilst exempting themselves (usually via tax dodging,) thus putting a larger burden on working class tax payers. I think it can generally be agreed that taxes are too high, and that all the government does is waste money. Why should it be up to a group of wealthy elites to decide what to do with YOUR money? Furthermore, why should they decide what to do with anybody's money? It is easy to be charitable with other people's money, not so much when it is your own. If you really cared for the poor and needy, you would much rather utilise your money in the way you want, rather than leaving up to fallible and corrupt politicians.

Some will no doubt gripe that the wealthy elite can't be trusted to simply help people in need. Many forget that some of the richest people in the world are amongst the biggest givers to charity. Bill Gates is perhaps the best known example of this. Secondly, a large number of the wealthy elite got to where they were due to government policy being favourable to them, and disadvantageous to rivals. If a company that is incapable of competing with rivals in a free market system, then they can lobby politicians. They can pledge financial and political support, providing those in power pass in certain legislation that is favourable to them, and unfavourable to rivals. The rival companies fail, and their company succeeds. Said rivals can be free to be bought out by the company in the government's favour. Such parasites are permitting to thrive and succeed due to government-directed central planning. A free economy would not permit this. There might not necessarily be a connection between businesses opting to compete fairly and charitable giving, but we can be sure that the majority of those who do not give charitably belong to the parasitic political class. Furthermore, eliminating the control of such a cabal will allow for a better economy, namely that other companies and businesses won't be disadvantaged by the machinations of the state, and affording workers increased income.

My premise then, is that fixing the economy would eliminate the need for the benefits and taxes altogether, and that this can be achieved by gradually replacing the current economic model of government control to one of economic freedom. This therefore feeds in to what I have argued in other blog posts, namely that such things would be unnecessary in a free economy. Real social justice is achieved when people work together, not when people are forced against their will to fund a corrupt system. It is important to stress, however, that welfare consists a relatively small amount of total expenditure. Government military spending is massively high, due to several unnecessary wars being waged. Western governments also spend a lot of money providing funds and weapons for a variety of puppet leaders throughout the globe. For example, Western governments set up and funded: Bashar Al-Assad, Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, and Osama bin Laden. Then there's government money wasted on subsidies and bail-outs for banks and corporations. Government spending has reached an all-time high, and absolutely no cuts are being made to these important areas at all. Indeed, the so-called "austerity" we are allegedly seeing now is nothing but spending redistribution. In fact, government spending has actually gone up! What needs to be done is to make massive cuts to government spending in areas that do not adversely affect the working population and the poor and needy. Then we can head to recovery, and then the things I have discussed can come to fruition.

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