I'm a socialist liberal.
And I'm a free-market anti-capitalist libertarian-anarchist voluntaryist-liberal.
Jonathan Haidt did a global study a couple of years back on the core moralities that separate liberals and conservatives. Everywhere in the world they boiled down to 3 things.
1) respect authority whether right or wrong
2) are loyal to their side whether right or wrong
3) are concerned with "purity" often to do with sexuality and race.
The core value that underpins liberal morality is to protect and empower. That is the moral duty of anyone in any sort of power.
What has happened in the US, is that 30 years of relentless deep-framed propaganda (see http://berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2003/10/27_lakoff.shtml
) that started around the time of the Powell Manifesto, has completely warped political discourse in the US... to the point where people who a generation ago would have been union-guys, are now unwitting shills for mega-conglomerated corporations.
This George Lakoff fellow seems to suffer from the Left-vs-Right mindset that views the state as a parental figure:
Back up for a second and explain what you mean by the strict father and nurturant parent frameworks.
Well, the progressive worldview is modeled on a nurturant parent family. Briefly, it assumes that the world is basically good and can be made better and that one must work toward that. Children are born good; parents can make them better. Nurturing involves empathy, and the responsibility to take care of oneself and others for whom we are responsible. On a larger scale, specific policies follow, such as governmental protection in form of a social safety net and government regulation, universal education (to ensure competence, fairness), civil liberties and equal treatment (fairness and freedom), accountability (derived from trust), public service (from responsibility), open government (from open communication), and the promotion of an economy that benefits all and functions to promote these values, which are traditional progressive values in American politics.
The conservative worldview, the strict father model, assumes that the world is dangerous and difficult and that children are born bad and must be made good. The strict father is the moral authority who supports and defends the family, tells his wife what to do, and teaches his kids right from wrong. The only way to do that is through painful discipline - physical punishment that by adulthood will become internal discipline. The good people are the disciplined people. Once grown, the self-reliant, disciplined children are on their own. Those children who remain dependent (who were spoiled, overly willful, or recalcitrant) should be forced to undergo further discipline or be cut free with no support to face the discipline of the outside world.
Stefan Molyneux has a great video "The State as Family"
discussing this mindset:
Most kids want stuff -- toys, candy, electronics -- and of course they want their parents to pay for it. They have the idea that daddy and mommy just sort of "have money." If you ask most little kids where that money comes from, they will say daddy works, or mommy works, but they don't really get it. They don't really think about the future, or deferring gratification, and they really don't understand what it means in the long run if their parents go into debt.
Most voters want stuff -- pensions, health care, welfare -- and of course they want the "government" to pay for it. They have the idea that politicians just sort of "have money." If you ask most voters where that money comes from, they will say -- er -- my taxes, but they don't really get it. They don't really think about the future, or deferring gratification, and they really don't understand what it means in the long run if their government goes into debt.
Parents often say that their kids should obey them because they pay the bills, and in particular, own the house -- "As long as you live under my roof, you'll live by my rules!" "If you don't like it here, feel free to leave!" Of course, it is very hard for children or teenagers to leave home, so the threat is fairly empty, but it seems to squelch debate anyway.
Patriots often say that citizens should obey the government because it provides services -- and in particular, because it runs the country. "If you live in this country, you obey the rules." "America -- love it or leave it." Of course, it's very hard for people to leave a country -- and go where -- to another tax cage? -- so the threat is fairly empty, but seems to squelch debate anyway.
In general, parents will take feedback from their children, but kids don't get any kind of binding vote. Parents also often bribe children to comply, and punish them if they disobey -- neither of which is any kind of rational argument.
Governments will take feedback from their citizens, but citizens don't get any kind of binding vote. Governments also bribe citizens to comply, and punish them if they disobey -- neither of which is any kind of rational argument.
Children who are spoiled with appeasement and unrealistic expectations will throw temper tantrums whenever their bribes are limited in any way.
Government dependents who are spoiled with appeasement and unrealistic expectations will throw temper tantrums whenever their bribes are limited in any way.
Patriotic propaganda explicitly references the family, and uses parental metaphors all the time... The Founding Fathers, the Department Of Homeland Security, the Fatherland in Germany, Mother Russia, the Strict Father (Republican) and the Caring Mother (Democrat), Uncle Sam and Homerule. Soldiers are "brothers in arms." Stalin was "Father of the Country." Mao was the "Father of the Chinese Revolution." And what's more American than "Mom and apple pie"? Just look at the parallels -- "My country, right or wrong," and "Blood is thicker than water."
The arguments are almost identical... If you receive government services, you owe obedience to the government -- just as if you take food and shelter from your parents, you owe obedience to your parents. Your parents own the house, so you have to obey them, or leave. The government owns the country, and so you have to obey it, or leave.
These "arguments" make no sense, but we all hear them a thousand times from our parents, so when politicians repeat this crap, it's almost impossible to resist, because it's been so deeply ingrained in our brains. This is why people take politics so personally, because they're really talking about their families. Numerous studies show that political biases tend to occur at the unconscious level, in patterns formed during early childhood. Don't you see the pattern? The government is an effect of the family. People try to change governments all the time, from the top down, using politics and laws and lobbying and voting, and it never really works. If you want to change the government, change the family. If you want a more peaceful society, have more peaceful families. Very, very few people can view politics outside the lens of their own family histories. Children eventually grow up and understand working, salaries, income and debt. Most voters never do. Most voters view government finances the way a five-year-old views his parents' money. And the reason for that is simple. Government schooling starts around the age of five. And that's when the indoctrination begins, and the thinking -- stops.
That was a very powerful video. So maybe the answer to the question of "Should the government act as an authoritative father or a nanny mother?"
is neither. But before we can break society out from this left-right state-as-a-parent mindset, we need to stop having coercive families.
I am old enough, and well travelled enough to have seen what gives people the most freedom. It's not "everyone out for themselves", it's not "small government", it's not "privatise everything"... it's a state that protects and empowers its citizens through tax contributions made by the citizens, with a greater percentage of tax being paid by corporations and the wealthy.
We've been through this before. This is how we got out of the 1930s depression
Yes, I have heard the theories about how FDR's giant warfare-welfare state managed to get out of the depression. The better question is whether or not the great depression would have been so long, deep or possibly even would have happened without the enormous government intervention in the money supply by the FED and other destructive government policies that need an entire book to discuss: pdf of "America's Great Depression" by Murray Rothbard
When I went to university it was in a time/country when the state paid all my expenses, and gave me a grant. I also worked in a strongly unionised industry in the holidays - which paid enough for me to buy a house, while I was at university. When I left, I was able to travel for years, play in bands etc for years - I had freedom. I am happy to pay tax so other people can have the same freedoms I did.
Your personal guilt about government bribes you received should have no bearing on whether I should be forced to pay taxes to pay back for your lavish lifestyle.
Today kids leaving university have a life of never-ending debt to look forward to... because the state no longer protects and empowers. You're on your own, at the mercy of usurious corporations that have you over a barrel.
Umm...maybe instead because the government has created a bubble in education. Haven't you heard that ~54% of college grads nowadays are unemployed and ~%85 go back home to live with their parents
Now you may think you're going to be best off... going it alone... going all unibomber... stocking up on gold (or bitcoins), baked beans and shotguns.
You're wrong. Organised labour is the only reliable way to protect yourself against the chronic excesses of a class-system. This is the only reliable leverage you have - to stop business. It's the only thing that has ever worked.
Well gosh, I don't have anything against organized labor. In fact, if you replace "Organised labour is the only reliable way" with "Organised labour is one way" then that would be the only part of your rant that I would actually agree with.
I don't understand why it's so essential that be entitled to be paid more than they are worth if it happens to be less than the supposed minimum wage. They know what they are agreeing to and they should know what's best for themselves.
There are no "boss-rights" and "employee-rights". There are only terms in a private contract. Depending on who owns the businesses assets, anything goes. It's their property.
+1. What is thought of as "boss" and "employee" are really just two traders: one who exhanges his labor for money, and one who exchanges her money for labor.