On the way to work, I listened to an obviously well-intentioned young chippy earnestly warbling on about leftish things. (Here’s a link) She spent most of her cute little song posing questions, in that awful, breathy, lethargic, world-weary, fragile voice of the contemporary lefty folk-pop singer. Here are some of the questions I remember:
- “What if it was [<– sic — it’s “artistic license“] your neighbor, living desperately?”
- “What if it was [sic] your mother, wanting to be free?”
- “What if you were a refugee?”
Then she re-posed, and re-posed again, those same questions, only changing up the people living desperately, wanting to be free, and being refugees. All the people she mentioned were, of course, important to you and me, the listeners. Sons, daughters, friends, brothers, sisters, etc.
It was a cute little song, meant to persuade you to arrive at this simple conclusion:
- If your neighbor were living desperately, or your mother wanted to be free, or you were a refugee, then you’d: Vote Democrat, support the Left, love the government. Then you’d support even more government programs, you’d willingly pay higher taxes. Right? Well, you would, wouldn’t you?
The earnest little warbler’s conclusion is… wrong. Stupid. Superficial, Ignorant… dumb. Wrong.
We have more government programs — and agencies, departments, and bureaus — and more, and more. And none of them ever suffer from even the slightest budget cuts.
We have higher taxes, and higher and higher. And none of the problems they’re all supposed to eliminate have even improved a little bit.(1)
After all, if government agencies, programs, departments and bureaus were actually designed to solve problems, then, well, problems would get solved.
Simple as that.
- Poverty rates are the same as, or worse than, at any time in our history.
- How’s the state of our education doing? We pay more for it than ever before — by a lot! Yet, by any rational measure, it’s the lowest quality it’s ever been.
- How’s Social Security? Solvent? (Answer: No.)
- How about healthcare costs? We pay more for it than ever before — by a lot!(2)
- How are race relations doing?
Don’t believe me about all this? Do a little thought exercise with me: Think of the last person you know of, who took a job willingly trying to make himself unnecessary, obsolete, unneeded… unemployed.
Oh, they’re out there, but they tend to be serial entrepreneurs and are rarely “unemployed,” and are frequently wildly wealthy.
Let me, then, re-frame the exercise: Think of the last government bureaucrat who took a job, and willingly tried to make himself unnecessary, obsolete, unneeded… unemployed.
Spoiler: There aren’t any: They get into their posts in Washington, and they spend the rest of their careers trying to persuade others of the urgent importance of their agency, department, bureau, program… and of themselves. All while the problem they’re supposed to address remains largely unchanged.
The answer to our earnest warbler’s questions, though, is really quite simple: Neighborhood, civic and religious — private — organizations. Organizations that have been regulated and taxed out of existence, but that used to have phenomenal success rates at curing people of addictions and raising people out of poverty. Used to be that people knew — and helped — their neighbors.
But, but, but, I hear you say: we don’t tax church and other civic organizations! No, we don’t. We tax to death, though, the people whose contributions used to sustain those organizations.(3)
Government regulation and taxation starved the very organizations that were actually bringing about real, meaningful improvements in the lives of the very Americans who needed it the most.
If these organizations were church-based groups, then they generally — though not always — did their work without regard for the race or sex of the individual in question. It wasn’t perfect, but it was all way, way, way better than the government’s pathetic efforts… which weren’t even aimed at resolving the problem in the first place!
So, the little people on the Left are, generally, not bad people. But, what they do is not good. What they say is often really bad. If the earnest warbler had actually thought and researched through the issues she sings about, then, well, she’d be a Conservative. The words of her song wouldn’t be what they are, because she’d know the answers to her questions.
What if your neighbor were living desperately? Well, obviously, the neighbors who knew her and valued her as a neighbor would all pitch in and help her to live better. What is there to sing — and complain — about when neighbor helps neighbor? Nothing. People do live desperately. People do then help them, as they should.
That doesn’t really, though, make for a ringing, clarion call to action from an earnest warbler, does it?
The ones who are actually bad people are the leadership of the Left who put out the shallow, racist, ugly messages that the little people and the earnest warblers, and the would-be earnest warblers, swallow uncritically… like a trout grabbing a fat (fake), wriggly worm. Then, of course, the earnest warblers and the would-be earnest warblers warble their silly ideas and thoughts to you and me, thinking that they’ve warbled something ever-so-deep.
The leadership of the Left knows that these warblers are none too bright, but that they want to be Big Deals.
What do you do for earnest warblers who want to be Big Deals, but don’t have the intellectual candle power to pull it off by themselves? Easy: flatter their egos! Let them think that when they’ve warbled their usual superficial codswallop, they’ve really expressed Great Things, and they’ve actually unveiled Great Thoughts.
That, of course, encourages other earnest warblers to get out there and warble earnestly, regardless of the fact that what they’re warbling is… kinda stupid.
The earnest warblers of the world, as well as the little, unthinking leftists, aren’t bad people. What they do and say is bad, but it comes from ignorance and a lack of motivation to think for themselves. We on the Right have to be able to make this distinction. A distinction, I might add, that the leftists are generally unwilling to make themselves.
(1) This isn’t entirely true. For example, as innovation has improved and lengthened people’s lives, the “poor” of America live like kings compared with much of the rest of the world. But this innovation comes entirely from the private sector! The poverty rate in America — despite the fluid definition of poverty itself — remains largely unchanged over time. Despite trillions of dollars having been already re-directed toward “fighting poverty.”
(2) This is one area of American life — healthcare quality — that has actually improved dramatically. However, the improvement has all come despite massive government interference in the industry. The improvement is entirely due to brilliant, private, scientific achievement, filled with discoveries of miraculous new ways to battle disease and support better health. That’s all going away as things like regulation and litigation make it ever less attractive to go into the healthcare field.
(3) We launched a revolution to divorce ourselves from England because of taxation rates far, far lower than what we have today. Our rallying cry used to be: “No taxation without representation!” Well, obscene taxation with representation ain’t any better.