The case against The Case Against Liberal Compassion

This is some hope for you liberals who are feeling a bit… down after November 4.

compassionSomehow, I have received in the (snail) mail the current (October 2014) issue of Imprimis. The article, The Case Against Liberal Compassion by William Voegeli, the Senior Editor of Claremont Review of Books, arrived right after the 2014 midterm elections. He attacks “the five big program areas that make up our welfare state.”

Basically, it’s the same old trope about liberals using other people’s money to do good. He uses the Affordable Care Act, and specifically the disastrous rollout of the Obamacare website as “proof”, ignoring the value of the actual program to the previously unemployed.

Of course, he does not once mention the major “welfare state,” corporate welfare. Even FORBES magazine, no liberal bastion, asked this year, Where Is The Outrage Over Corporate Welfare? Not to mention the cover-up of economic malfeasance.

In fact, I believe that it would be a very good thing to reduce the number of working families who are on the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), which I knew as Food Stamps. Ultimately, the government is supplementing Wal-Mart and McDonalds and those other businesses providing less than livable wages to their employees, expanding the welfare state.

But rather than creating a blow-by-blow response, for which I haven’t the energy, I recommend to you the Weekly Sift’s Republicans have a story to tell. We’re stuck with facts. It does not actually deal with the Imprimis article, but was, rather, an antidote to it for me.

Everything the Democrats support is on the wrong scale: We want to raise the minimum wage, and subsidize your health insurance, and pay women the same as men, and cut back the war on minor drugs, and create jobs building infrastructure, and put a little less carbon in the air. All good stuff…

What the current Democratic strategy misses is precisely the caring-about-things-that-don’t-directly-affect-you that the Republican story inspires…

It may also provide some hope for you liberals who are feeling a bit… down after November 4.

Ultimately, though, I’m convinced that it’s not just the expenditure of government money that is at issue. That would not explain the increasing number of municipalities that are criminalizing the hungry and the homeless, because it would not “look good.” The Scott Walker wants jobless and food stamp recipients to face drug testing, an exercise in other states, such as Florida, that is not only demeaning but actually costs more to do than the savings from cutting off drug users; a lousy use of the public dollar.

So, yes, I’ll still accept the liberal mantle. Unlike the straw horse argument by Voegeli, I DO value the implementation of efficiency. Too often, though, those “efficiencies” are implement to either line the pockets of the connected or obfuscate the real problems.

I’ll opt for compassion.

Author: Roger

I'm a librarian. i hear music, even when it's not being played. I used to work at a comic book store, and it still informs my life. I won once on JEOPARDY! - ditto.

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