Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Personal Responsibility

My tirade against Ron Paul on Friday required that I spend a significant amount of time on his site. It would have been irresponsible for me to go on at length criticizing him if I didn't get the facts from the source. This got me to thinking about personal responsibility. Last week, I spent a lot of time defining conservatism, as far too many people use it, as they do the name of Ronald Reagan, as a label rather than looking at the principles that define it. And I've boiled down conservatism to two principles that define everything that is true conservatism: Freedom and Personal Responsibility.

Now, if you were paying attention or remember the title of today's blog (go ahead, look up if you forgot, I won't complain), you know what I'm going to talk about.

Government's job is to, and I'll just quote:
...establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity...
That covers freedom pretty well, which leaves personal responsibility. It is the responsibility of every person to take care of themselves, by earning a living, managing their own affairs, and and seeking in trade or by purchase, those things they cannot provide for themselves. Okay, I know that to almost anyone reading this the last sentence is a statement of the obvious. But sometimes you have to state the obvious because it s not as simple as it sounds.

Far too many people are turning to the government to provide them services. Having spent a few years on the bottom rung financially, including now, I am still amazed by the amount of money that the government gives out. But the price you pay in self respect is great, and your desire to submit to a nanny state can easily become overwhelming.

The goal of government should not be to help people, it should be to make sure fewer people need help. And to do this, government must get out of the way as much as possible, allow us to live as we choose, and not prop up those who choose to destroy their lives. This is harsh, but any able adult who wants to destroy themselves should be allowed to do so. Disposing of a corpse is not too expensive, and I'd rather the government not waste resources that could go to things of importance on people who willingly kill themselves slowly.

So I will have a couple more blogs in the next couple of days in this vein which will drive home the point of personal responsibility. So until then, here's a link for everyone: Cajun Tiger's Rants and Raves. Right now, he's blogging away from somewhere in Iraq. Gotta appreciate that.

1 comment:

F@tman said...

Personal responibility is something that gets bantered around regularly. Being responsible for obtaining and maintaining the things in your life to exsist without the Government teet is something everyone should be doing, provided that they can.

As we know, every country has its share of able and non-able bodied people. Those that can work, should work. Those that can't should be helped in anyway necessary so that they can live as normal a life as possible.

However, let's not confuse helping with handing out. Living in a country of just over 4 million people, I see everyday how the welfare system has failed so many people. Too many people have learned that if they hold their hands out long enough, they'll get more and more. And, a lot of people use their ethnicity and culture as an excuse to milk the system for every drop they can.

Now, I'm not pointing fingers here, but when you spend your entire entitlement on the pokie machines or on booze and then go crawling to the Government for help because you can't pay your rent, then you need a good kick right up the ass.

Remember, for those who genuinely need it, a hand up not a hand out.