Well, make a couple. Divide and conquer! Wahooo!

(I’m using the terms “liberal” and “conservative” very loosely in this post.  Liberals traditionally had great ideas, it’s progressives that I’m talking about.  Why not use “progressives”?  They all think they’re liberal.  Also, this isn’t a Republican/Neocon vs Democrat comparison.  It’s more of a Libertarian/Ron Paul Conservative vs The World.  So most Republicans will probably fit into the  “Liberal” title.)

There is the popular idea that liberals are the heartfelt givers and conservatives are the heartless takers.  Liberals want a world where everyone loves one another and everybody shares everything and everyone is healthy and happy.  Conservatives want to hoard what is theirs and enslave lesser people to poverty.    Liberals believe altruism, sacrifice, is the ultimate good.  Conservatives believe that they must be completely selfish (not the rational kind) to get ahead.  Liberals love life.  Conservatives love money (and eating kittens).

The ironic thing is that when these ideas take physical form, liberals are shown to be hypocrites over and over again.

Givers Takers

Liberals tend to like the idea of redistribution of wealth.  The evil fat cats who have all that money don’t deserve it.  I deserve it.  Why?  They have too much and I don’t have enough.  So their idea of giving is taking money from people who they feel don’t need or deserve it and give it to the people who in their estimation need it.  That is a philosophy of theft.  Beyond that, it also means liberals have less faith in humanity than conservatives do.  Those who believe the government needs to steal money from one group of people to give to another are offending both parties.  They don’t believe the rich will provide for the poor and they don’t believe that the poor can survive by their own means.

If the philosophy of theft is morally fucked, just think of the incentives in such a system.  The rich are punished for creating wealth, stupid.  Maybe even more stupid, though, is what it teaches the poor.  “It’s okay to steal from other people, you deserve what they’ve created.”  “You don’t need to worry about living, we’ll take care of that for you.”  “And don’t do anything to provide too well for your family, because then we’ll start taking from you instead.”  This incentive structure has to lead to less of everything.  Not only does it destroy the great production pie but it also creates social divides where there really shouldn’t be any.  Now the rich despise the poor because they are sucking on their bank accounts and the poor despise the rich because they have to rely on them.

Capitalists end up being the true Givers.  Entrepreneurs make money because they make value in excess.  They have to make something that you want and give it to you at a price equal to or less than you are willing to pay for it.  So in order to be a successful businessman you have to give more than you take, you have to be a net Giver.  (Any and all instances of businesses fucking the public are either short lived or made possible by the government, the vast majority of the time it’s the latter.)  Let’s look at the incentives in a community that believes in the philosophy of creation.  The wealthy entrepreneurs are encouraged to keep creating wealth, jobs, and value.  The poor can see that in order to be a consumer they must first be a producer.  When incentives aim at a bigger pie everyone wins.  History shows us that the only reliable way to create a better standard of living is to create a bigger pie.  If you want a bigger middle class then stop taxing away entrepreneurship.

‎”Do not confuse altruism with kindness, good will or respect for the rights of others. These are not primaries, but consequences, which, in fact, altruism makes impossible.  The irreducible primary of altruism, the basic absolute, is self-sacrifice—which means; self-immolation, self-abnegation, self-denial, self-destruction—which means: the self as a standard of evil, the selfless as a standard of the good.” – Ayn Rand