Just Above Sunset Archives

August 24, 2003 Mail

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I do send out some odd email, and receive equally odd email in return.  Here I will print some of it, with, now and then, my responses.   Before I post anyone's writing, I will ask your permission to post your comments and whether I should use your name or not, or use an alias you wish to use.
A bit of dialog with a Canadian friend about the economy, and how folks up there see things a bit differently...

Snippets for the exchange -

Hollywood - "It does seem in my arguments with the supply-siders, my conservative friends who think the tax cuts are great because they will vastly increase the supply of goods and have productivity rise dramatically because fewer and fewer people are needed to make those goods, and thus profits will rise dramatically - well, my argument that someone has to buy the stuff is dismissed as stupid.  Oh well."

London, Ontario - "Your argument is right on.  Henry Ford realized this logic some one hundred years ago.  Paying his workers enough to buy the goods they produced made his workers more productive and better off financially.  And old Henry got fantastically rich in the process too.  Go figure...  Think you could find an economist today who would approve of such heretical notions?"

Hollywood - "Henry Ford?  Well, what I'm hearing from actual, real people on the right is pretty clear.

  • FDR's social policies to get us out of the Great Depression failed miserably.  All those spending programs to get people into any kind of work - the WPA and all that, and starting up the Social Security Program - made people believe the world, or at least the government, owes them something.  These policies and programs took away their initiative and made them into whining "victims" who always expect a bail-out and don't want to actually do anything.  FDR is thus the most evil of American presidents, as his policies pretty much destroyed the character of the "frontier" American who was, previous to this, a self-reliant self-starter who, when he saw a problem, fixed it himself and didn't expect some paternalistic government to save his butt.  The only thing that saved America is that FDR realized all this crap wasn't working and got us into World War Two when we didn't actually have to fight.  He finally figured it out - getting in was the only way to cover the total failure of his economic policies.
  • Actually spoken to me regarding the current Social Security Program where people have had part of the wages set aside during all their working lives to cover rent and food and such when they retire - "I don't see why my tax dollars should pay for someone else's retirement when they didn't have the brains to set aside money for their old age.  Why should I pay because they were just stupid?"  This of course is based on the idea that the funds available after the next decade or two won't cover the contractual obligation to pay the monthly check to the retiree.  The demographics are the problem - aging folks who live longer.  FDR didn't see that one coming.  And the quote is exact, word for word, by the way.
  • Eisenhower may have been, at times, a good president, but his program in the fifties to build the interstate highway system was socialism.  If we needed such a system then building it and financing it should have been left to private industry.  That way critical areas would be served because there was a profit in serving those areas - inefficiency would have been taken out of the system.  And these would be toll roads paid for by those who use them.  If you didn't use them, you wouldn't have to pay.  With this "socialist" road system hard working individuals have to pay big money for something that does them no good - and something they didn't agree to.
  • Why should I pay for your kids' schooling?  If you choose to have children you should take the responsibility, the personal responsibility, to acquire sufficient money to pay for their education, or school them at home.   Why are you turning to the government to provide what you are too lazy or too cheap to provide for your own children?  Why do I owe you MY money to educate YOUR kids?  The education of your children is your responsibly - there should be no government funding for any of it, and no standards imposed by any government bureaucrats at any level.  It's your responsibility and as such, the government has no business regulating it, or even considering it as an issue.  And public schools are a dismal failure anyway, as all can see. 

I could go on.  But you get the drift.  I really have listened to each of these arguments. 

Folks really hold these positions, which are maybe more libertarian than anything else.  Folks I know personally. 

Now you see why a good part of America down here really thinks you Canadians have your heads up your asses.  Socialized medicine?  Equal legal rights for gays?  Welfare payments that never end?  Legalized marijuana for medical purposes?  Massive social spending on schools?  What are you THINKING?