The Story of Entitlement Addiction

Right Side NewsDr. Tibor Machan

Welfare states rely on a complacent population, like spoiled children on spineless parents. So when finally the jig is up, no more vital fluids to leach, it is impossible to change course without serious pain. What the Republicans are asking for now is that the Democrats and their constituents agree to simple withdrawal and not scream from the pain of it all. With the public philosophy of the Democrats this is hopeless since they have been preaching that all you need to pay for it all is to rip off the rich, to rob them of their wealth and redistribute it throughout the land. But no amount of confiscation from the rich is going to fulfill the expectations of the millions of people who have become hooked on entitlements.

Of course, for a good while this entitlement mania could be satisfied because its comeuppance could be kicked down the path for the next generation to deal with. Social security, medicare, subsidies of all sorts, unemployment compensation, funding of wildly speculative and minimally productive scientific adventures, price supports for farmers, military adventures, nearly limitless support for state colleges and universities, foreign aid, and so on and so forth – all this piled up and now the chicken are coming home to roost. And politicians and their bureaucrats didn't prepare the population for it, so it just crashed upon the country even though many marginalized smart and decent people who knew better kept warning us. One good example was F.A. Hayek's The Road to Serfdom, not to mention several of Ludwig von Mises's long and short books. And then there was Ayn Rand's monumental novel of 1957, Atlas Shrugged, that pretty much foretold what we are now witnessing and must tell about to our children and grandchildren who will be the most severely hit by it all. All these warnings were waved aside by the entitlement pushers, the ones who wanted to be elected and to run the managerial state. They misunderstood or more likely refused to see how it goes when one postpones coming to terms with Draconian profligacy.

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