A bit of a philosophical debate I've been having in my little mind for a couple years and that is one of the morality of collecting a government check.
Understand one of the primary reasons I have the energetic, cynical, rage-filled, bombastic personality you've all come to know and love harkens from arguably the darkest days of my life - college.
They were dark because of the sheer amount of work I foisted upon myself, not out of self-discipline, but because if I didn't, I would not have succeeded. I had no help, parental, government, familial, nor friends, and this resulted in me working full time and going to school full time. The years of sleep-deprivation, weight loss (I went from 147 to 118) and mental strain took its toll, but it forged a viciously independent person, incapable of empathy as it was very likely what I went through was worse than whoever was complaining about life being tough. Because of this the single largest thing I prided myself on was my independence. I didn't need my parents, I didn't need a government hand out. I graduated, top of my class, 6 months early, with no debt and cash to spare. Nobody else I knew did that.
However, times have changed and whereas I was very judgmental about people collecting a government check, living off of the government or just not carrying their load, I'm not quite sure about that anymore. ie-the playing field and the rules have become so warped and so illogical, perhaps my old school beliefs are no longer obsolete, but just outright wrong.
For example, a big complaint in the "manosphere" is how traditional roles between men and women have changed. A large part of the men (and the women, I might add) lament this change and pine for the good old days of the 1950's to return. Men in the divorce community are desperate for a traditional woman to love and care for them, just as women howl "where have all the good men gone?" However, the forces that be are making such a return impossible. Plus society has been so brainwashed to ignore factual differences between men and women (going so far as to villainize the mentioning of these differences), deprogramming this communist brainwashing is going to take longer than most people have remaining in life expectancy. Therefore, the healthy or rational choice is not to lament this change, but to accept it as fact (which it is) and change your behavior to take advantage of it. Ergo, the rise of the "pick up artist."
"OK, you ladies want to be everything and do it all and have grrrrrl power and get divorce on a whim. You want to eschew traditional marriage and courting. You want to eschew traditional roles and go on slut walks or be the bread winner and be like guys. You want to jack up my taxes to effectively have the government replace men? Fine, we'll adapt. We'll become Man-Children, we'll never grow up, we'll just play our video games, we won't get married, we'll get vasectomies, we won't trust you, we'll use you, we'll tell you what you want to hear just so we can get what we want."
Is it disagreeable?
My idealistic, idiotic, "white knight," "uber beta," old school, youthful moral self would have said yes.
Is it reality?
My experienced, older and much-wiser self today says "damn right it is."
And guess which one I live in.
Sadly, this same logic has to be applied to today's economic reality as it pertains to self-supportation, independence and relying on the government.
Understand over time, government spending as a percent of GDP has gone from about 5% to 45% today. This includes state, local and federal spending. With government spending accounting for such a large percent of the population, it almost is impossible to live 100% of the time without being reliant upon the government at some point in your life. Additionally, with the private sector, production, wealth, excellence, progress and achievement being punished in the form of regulation, taxation and outright political and social derision, it becomes progressively harder to simply find private-sector employment (let alone a place where you can excel). So whereas our younger, more idealistic selves would be focusing on the shame of collecting a government check or taking a cushy government job, we do our modern day selves a disservice in ignoring the economic realities more or less forcing you to.
Much as I would like to stand here and say collecting a government check is bad, shameful and wrong, and champion the traditional American way of manly independence, if society is so hell bent on socialism and is stupid enough to put a guy like Barack Obama into office, not to mention equally hell bent on punishing individualism, profit and excellence, then in the end we're the suckers for slaving away anyway, trying to find jobs, merely to pay more in taxes for the slackers. And therefore, disagreeable as it may be to collect a government check, and disagreeable as it may be to "neg" women as a player, unfortunately that is the reality society has placed upon us.
Now, does this mean I fully endorse everybody going on the dole and stopping the fight against socialism? No, not at all. However, what I am trying to point out is that during these times of harsh economic conditions it is OK to collect a government check or go on unemployment. It is OK for those of you truly, psychologically independent people who love freedom and liberty to take from the government coffers. Of all people that deserve it, it's those of us who loathe and hate collecting a government check. And therefore you should have no shame in doing so. Better yet, if you can psychologically reprogram yourself, you might even be able to enjoy a much needed respite from a progressively decaying corporate world.
Really try to enjoy the decline.
(On a related note)
Paraphrasing Ayn Rand, there is no morale value in avoiding government assistance, for it deprives the individual twice over; once, for taxes paid, and then again, for receiving nothing in return.
Its hard to disagree with you but some of us have a stake in the future in the form of children. All socialist forms of government collapse and the results aren't pretty. I am preparing my children by making sure they have the skills to live off grid. I live in a suburban neighbourhood, but my kids know how to fish and hunt and make things and fix things. They are only six and eight yo, but they will learn how to cook and prepare food over a fire, plant and preserve food. In short, they will have all the skills there grand parents had and took for granted as just normal life skills, because by the time they are adults, or their kids are adults that the kind of world we will be back to. - minuteman
Government is the ultimate beta male.
Believe it or not Capt,
Going on the Dole is exactly what has to be done to break the Socialist tide.
If everyone went on the dole and no one worked...how long could the socialist experiment last?
Basically you do the Saul Alinsky tactic, but turn it on them.
Regarding preparing your kids:
Civilization is cyclical. I do not think we are going to see Mad Max or, God forbid, The Road, but we might see a kind of Middle Ages come back. It is every parent's duty to ensure their kids are well prepared for anything, from surviving school to surviving a collapse.
This is something, everyone comes to realize at some point in life. That a single individual is a very small force, in a rather large world. You just happen to be living in a time of large debts, high taxes, big government, and general industrial decline. There is not much any one single person can do, except try and cope. Earlier American generations were born into tremendous growth and opportunity. They could take advantage of a growing economy. The single individual has very little impact on their social circumstances. They just have to play the hand they are dealt.
Most people do not comprehend this aspect of the human condition, until a little later in life.
I read a book by a former CIA officer who was told by a Syrian in the fifties "I have alwoays considered ripping off the government to be a patriotic act."
I sent a link to this article to my friend, an IT professional with numerous other skills, who has been unemployed for 3 1/2 years. He is totally stressed out and has had to go on disability and government assistance and is totally depressed over it. I tell him not to worry about it. It's the only option left for millions. You paid into it your whole life and never expected to get a dime back out of it. So what if the government is trillions of dollars in debt. You didn't cause that, and if it takes millions of Americans on disability or other assistance to finally bring the whole system crashing down then whatever it takes. This insanity has to end.
Myself, like others here worry about my children. If things have not improved by the time they are ready for college (and I do not expect them to improve) then I will not waste one dollar on some stupid waste of time worthless degree. They will go to a technical college and get some actual skill that is useful or they will get a job or join the military and get some kind of training. And if need be I'll quit my stinking IT job and start a business and hire them (if we're still legally permitted to create jobs by then). Otherwise it's survivalist time. I am thinking of selling my stocks and investing in commodities (of the shiny variety), and maybe it's time to start investing in lead, lots of lead.
dditionally, with the private sector, production, wealth, excellence, progress and achievement being punished in the form of regulation, taxation and outright political and social derision, it becomes progressively harder to simply find private-sector employment (let alone a place where you can excel).
Plus, we have designed things to reward private sector activities that funnel wealth over those that create it.
Do you think I'd rather be a "financial engineer" than do some other kind of complex programming or mathematical work? Damn right I would. We all didn't pursue degrees in math, physics, engineering, and chemistry to write "World of Moneycraft" (which is what it feels like sometimes).
However, after three layoffs in 9 years punctuated by writing mind numblingly stupid web applications over and over I wasn't about to do it again.
There is a classic Dilbert where he and Wally are told by Phil to choose their punishment: have meaningful work but be poor or be well paid but have their work burnt in front of their eyes at the end of every day.
They both laughed because either was better than poorly paid meaningless work.
So, sure, why try to be productive when at best it'll be stolen and at worst you'll be stopped before you succeed and in neither case will your productivity be rewarded.
As Jon Derbyshire says:
Get a government job.
I just don't even know what to say about this post Cappy. It saddens me really.
Is is so easy to get on welfare. IT IS SO HARD TO GET OFF IT.
I've seen directly what welfare does to a family. For generations.
If you had some skill previously - your skills degrade. You will not be able to ask the same amount of money for that skill. It's the same reason women "get paid less".
An administration is temporary. Welfare almost certainly turns into forever.
I'm thankful for my cushy state job. Even then, if you only count federal, SS, medicare, and local property taxes (city, school, county), I'm looted of a cool 23% of my pay before I even to get to buy groceries or pay the mortgage.
No reason to work your ass of thats for sure though I did partake of school loans (paid off) and did have to take unemployment years ago because they take so much.
daminit, I don't have the safety net of an unemployment check and I have to pay all my FICA taxes....
donchya luv my libertarian "employers" paying me as an independent contractor.....
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