The myth of liberal compassion
What will it take for the country to wake up to the destructive ravages of liberalism — and finally do something about them?
Liberals continue to masquerade as exclusive proprietors of compassion, but their policies stubbornly undermine their possessory claim. Indeed, Obama’s “fundamental transformation” of America is nothing less than America’s decline and destruction in the name of compassion and fairness.
You can’t scan a day’s news without seeing proof of this. Let’s look at just two items in today’s news digest.
The Cato Institute has released a report documenting that in Obama’s America, “welfare pays better than work.” Cato’s Michael Tanner concludes that the federal government funds 126 programs targeted at low-income Americans, a shocking 72 of which involve the transfer of cash or in-kind benefits to individuals. This does not include the many assistance programs provided by state and local governments.
The Cato study examines the state-by-state value of welfare for a mother of two children. In the state of New York, for example, “a family receiving Temporary Assistance for Needy Families, Medicaid, food stamps, WIC, public housing, utility assistance and free commodities (like milk and cheese) would have a package of benefits worth $38,004, the seventh-highest in the nation.”
Because welfare benefits aren’t taxable, a New York wage earner would have to earn in excess of $21 per hour to do better than his welfare recipient counterpart, which is more than a beginning teacher makes. Though benefits vary among the states, for many recipients, especially long-term dependents, welfare pays substantially more than an entry-level job.
Ponder the powerful disincentive this constitutes to work — just like the endless extension of unemployment benefits over which Obama is always willing to shut down the government.
How can a society that embraces the work ethic not shudder in horror at this development? Yet a great portion of our society and political class doesn’t.
Obviously, this state of affairs threatens America’s fiscal integrity and is punitive to those in the workforce. Perhaps what’s not so obvious, at least to bleary-eyed utopians, is that such excessive transfer payments ultimately harm the recipients in the long term. So do punitive taxes on the “rich.” A powerful piece in The Wall Street Journal on Monday demonstrates that “targeting the wealthy kills jobs.” In other words, folks, liberal compassion is not compassionate.
Cato posits that the best cure for poverty is still a job. And contrary to what the compassion snobs doubtlessly believe, even minimum-wage jobs can launch people out of poverty.
A specific remedy is to strengthen work requirements in welfare programs. In fact, we’ve done it, and it worked. But Obama didn’t like it and reversed it because he is trapped in his radicalized worldview, a narrow-minded ideology that misinforms him that we have a closed economy with a fixed amount of income — a finite, zero-sum pie that offers the opportunity for individual growth only through redistribution. Is it any wonder he has given us perpetual economic malaise?
In our next news item of the day, we read about the enormous expansion of the regulatory state under Obama and how it will outlast his term in office.
In my most recent two books, in which I chronicled President Obama’s ongoing assault on America, I substantiated the frightening growth of the regulatory state under Obama, which has since become even worse — by Obama’s design. Just as he lied about increasing domestic oil production, he falsely claimed he has streamlined our regulatory climate.
He’s frequently huffed that he will use all tools at his disposal — many of them regulatory — to advance his agenda when Congress won’t bend to his will. He has acted unilaterally on immigration, labor, energy, gun control, cybersecurity, sentencing guidelines for drug offenses and the environment, to name a few.
The Hill reports that in Obama’s first three years in office, the Code of Federal Regulations increased by 7.4 percent, almost twice the rate of President George W. Bush’s first term. Douglas Holtz-Eakin, a former director of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, asserts, “It would be difficult for anyone to pretend that this isn’t a high water mark in terms of regulation.”
These rules and regulations are not only smothering our economy but also destroying our individual liberties and threatening our constitutional framework because they are promulgated and enforced by unelected and unaccountable bureaucrats.
You don’t need to be an economist to understand that Obama’s massive taxing, spending and regulations
This post was modified from its original form on 21 Aug, 5:45
You don’t need to be an economist to understand that Obama’s massive taxing, spending and regulations are causing America’s economic decline. You don’t need to be a sociologist to grasp that his runaway welfare schemes are robbing people of their dignity while doing little to alleviate poverty.
At some point, Obama and his fellow liberals need to be judged for the effects of their policies, not the grandiosity of their self-congratulatory rhetoric.
It’s often said that there is nothing compassionate about being charitable with other people’s money. It’s not said often enough that arrogant liberal experiments in forced “fairness” are affirmatively cruel because they comprehensively destroy wealth and prosperity and greatly harm the people they promise to benefit.
David Limbaugh is a writer, author and attorney. His latest book, “The Great Destroyer,” reached No. 2 on the New York Times best-seller list for nonfiction.
The minimum wage should be based on cost of living in an area.
The outrage is that a beginning teacher makes less than $21 an hour.
It is an outrage that the central planning of public education has caused costs of education to rise so dramatically. As far as teachers pay? The starting pay cited does not include benefits and is above the average wage of Americans who are much older. Still, the biggest waste is the costs of federal programs. The costs of administering these programs takes resources away from teachers and burdens working teachers with useless paperwork. There are many dedicated teachers leaving the profession, not because of pay, but because of interference by the latest central planning schemes.
As far as minimum wage? The idea that increases in minimum wage would help the worker, especially entry level workers lacks merit. Higher wages means fewer jobs, and increases automation. It does help unions though, as it restricts those who would compete with union labor. Which explains why there is support by unions for increases. Of course, keeping the poor dependent on government is part of the picture.
Increases in minimum wages will also result in higher prices. Again, this effects lower income demographics more than the highest income demographics. Higher prices are routinely offset by those connected with a increasingly corrupt system. Unions, the media, government employees and various crony's are taken care of. We see an example in Obama care in Congress getting higher pay for their staffs to offset the "outrageous" increases in what they would pay as a result of the legislation that will cost others so dearly.
It's a corrupt system that exploits the productive to benefit those that are affiliated with the State.
Jim: they are already closing some fast food chains already here in MA because of constant striking by workers for higher wages. $10 is already paid here in MA and I believe they want nearly double. No point in eating at McDonalds or Wendys, etc. as the meals will be double or more in price. There will be more unemployed, this is already an anemic economy.
7 out of every 8 job hirees are part time only.
People are relying on government subsides more and more, SNAP enrollments are record high and they continue to grow in an economy of part-timers.
Union pensions are already bankrupting major cities. There is no end to this devastation which is growing bigger daily.