Too many social problems are conceived of in terms of what “we” can do for “them.” After decades of massive expansions of the welfare state, the answer seems to range from “not very much” to “making matters worse.”
Undaunted, people in a number of countries are coming up with new proposals that are variations on the theme of government-provided income — which amounts to relieving people from personal responsibility.
Yet even some conservatives and libertarians are coming up with proposals for more “efficient” versions of the welfare state — namely direct cash grants for life to virtually all adults, instead of the current hodgepodge of overlapping bureaucratic programs.
Charles Murray recognizes that “some people will idle away their lives” under his proposal. “But that is already a problem,” he says, and therefore is no valid objection to replacing the current welfare state with a less costly alternative.
Everyone recognizes that there are some people unable to provide for their own survival — infants and the severely disabled, among others. But providing for such people is wholly different from a blanket guarantee for everybody that they need not lift a finger to feed, clothe or shelter themselves.Read the rest of Thomas Sowell's op-ed HERE.
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