In a message dated 6/19/03 10:28:48 PM, [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes: >>From: [EMAIL PROTECTED] > >> >>In a message dated 6/19/03 6:28:26 PM, [EMAIL PROTECTED] writes: >> >> >The main "good" it provides is a negative one, that of keeping >>homelessness >> > >> >and starvation to a low enough level to prevent political instability. >> > >>This of course presumes that the welfare state reduces homelessness and >>starvation rather than encouraging it. > >Of course. But what it's proponents intend and what it actually does may >be >two different things. Then too, although non-statist alternatives might > >reduce destitution, they might also carry unacceptable costs to the ruling > >class. What's efficient from the perspective of the general welfare may >be >quite inefficient for those currently benefitting from the state. > >Tolstoy had a little parable along these lines that beautifully describes > >the mindset of the corporate liberal: a humane farmer took extraordinary > >measures to make life more comfortable for his cattle. He had his hired > >hands take them out of the pen for walks; he played music for them; he > >bought better food, etc. He was asked, "But wouldn't it be a lot less > >complicated, if their welfare is your main goal, to just knock down the > >fence?" The farmer replied: "But then I couldn't milk them."
An apt and amusing metaphor, Kevin! David