thegreekdog wrote: PLAYER57832 wrote: thegreekdog wrote:
Symmetry wrote:Agreed, but there is a well-established way of avoiding that moral obligation for people who really don't want to deal with the problem of poverty. Make poverty itself a moral crime. Call the poor feckless, lazy, ignorant and inherently criminal. It's one of those pervasive 19th century ideas that equates poverty with mental illness and criminality.
It's an easy get-out for people who don't want to think too hard.
The 20th and 21st century view is that the government can take care of those people, which is also an easy get-out for people who don't want to think too hard or actually solve the inherent problems.
Does your public school suck? Let's just throw another $2 million at it like we did every year for the past 30 years.
Out of work? Let's just keep you on unemployment for a year or more.
Underemployed? Let's just make sure you get enough food stamps and welfare checks to keep you there.
I see, becuase its now the government's job to create jobs, not just to provide a safety net.
What ever happened to your lauded free market that was to solve everything completely on its own.
What? No seriously, what are you saying?
The government's job is not to create jobs. The government can provide a safety net. But there is providing a safety net, and then there's what the government does now, which is perpetuate the state that people find themselves in.
I understand you wish to make that claim, but then where are all these jobs just open and available.. and how many of them actually pay enough for a person to live upon? As Symmetry noted, its easy to point the finger.
Why aren't there more jobs out there? According to you, it must be government assistance, because according to you, if it were not for that assistance more people would be working. Therefore you are asking the government to provide jobs. I say, instead that the governmetn provides a safety net and when people who work still qualify for assistance then maybe the problem is that the wages are too low... particularly when the percentage income of CEOs proportional to lowest wage workers is skyrocketing in so many organizations, when stock prices determine far more about company policy than long term product integrity and quality...I say THAT is the problem, not government assistance.
thegreekdog wrote: It seems clear, at least to me, if we just take public schools, as an example. Public schools in the United States get more money per student, by far, than any other public school system in the world, yet we have very poor schools for the most part. I certainly don't have a solution to that problem, but I do know that the solution should not be making the per student amount higher when throwing more money at the problem has not worked the 2,000 other times we've done it. But I don't see anyone proposing anything other than throwing more money at the problem. Why?
For starters, our students are not equal to other students. In other countries, most kids get universal medical care, so you don't have that whole myriad of issues with which to deal. They generally don't have the serious crime issues and various social service disasters we allow in our country. Also, kids in other countries who have disabilities, particularly the most serious are classed under different programs, not just lumped with regular students.
There are other issues, but too much money is not the problem. You are correct that "just throwing money" at the problem is not the answer, but neither is saying "Public schools suck, private schools do better.. so put all kids in private schools". The truth is that there are some pretty bad private schools, even that stay in business. In some cases, these poor schools stay in business because some parents care more about religion or other belief systems than they do about overt quality of education -- to them, things other than how well their child reads and writes or, particularly, understands science. Further, the biggest advantages private schools have is just the ability to be selective. They don't have to take the difficult child. Public schools do. That makes a HUGE difference.
Its not that public schools are perfect or as good as they could be. Its that the claim that privatization will fix everything is patently and proven false.. but people still keep making the claim becuase it meets their political agendas.
I'm also not a 100% free market person, as you well know. What I am in favor of is limiting the government's control over things, especially when the things it does are abject failures in nearly every way.
Except, is welfare truly an abject failure or is it just a bit too much of a success? You have said that your income exceeds $200K. I don't consider that "rich", but at the same time, you don't seem to recognize or to be willing to admit that it does very much put you in the very upper escheleon of income earners in this country. Nor do I think you have really and truly looked objectively at why you are there instead of, say, working in a factory or flipping burgers. Don't get me wrong, you are certainly intelligent, have certainly worked hard..... but so are and have many other people who don't make $50,000. More than a few of those people even studied law, passed their bar exams.
I have no problem with people making millions or billions. I have a problem when people making those kinds of incomes turn around and declare that they "have" to move their company overseas because they just "cannot afford" the taxes and/or the pay unions demand.. or follow the environmental regulations. I have a problem with this idea that its OK to ignore impacts of pollution in an industry because it is creating jobs -- never mind that the pollution is going to last a couple hundred years and the jbos maybe a decade. Yet, when you say that welfare is too high, that people should just go out and get jobs... when people cannot feed their families, they are willing to ignore impacts of pollution or abuse by bosses or any other negative situation just to put the food on their table. Having welfare gives a few people who are idiots a jerks a "pass", but it also serves as the fall back for many, many hardworking people -- people who work in their communities even when getting welfare or who work hard looking for a job (until depression or desperation make them give up for a time), people who maybe "could" geta job.. if they were willing to let whomever take care of their kids, (and I mean truly abusive or negligent providers!), or willing to put up with truly nasty abusive bosses or deal with truly dangerous situations.
Have you ever read Steven Covey's 7 Habits? One of the things he points out is that a poor manager will always blame the employees for failures.. he cannot find good work, etc, etc. Good managers, to contrast, seem "magically" to find good employees. The difference is not the employees, its the manager. Today, too many companies simply want to take the easy route and say "those lazy bastards... welfare is too high" instead of looking honestly at the choices THEY have made. They are the first to explain to employees how they must take pay cuts, work more... etc, etc.... but somehow when the balance sheets come out great, all they can do is give out a nice dinner or some kind of award. Those things are nice, but not as nice as a fatter paycheck!