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Friday, February 25, 2005

Social(ist) Security

The welfare state functions as Bismarck intended.  It enslaves the citizenry by making them wards of the political state.

Mark Alexander, Executive Editor and Publisher of The Federalist Patriot, gives us a brief, but useful, summary of the unconstitutional imposition of Social Security in 1935, as a pillar of the socialist welfare state.  In What Social Security Crisis?, he reminds us that the people who wrote the Constitution understood clearly that it would be illegal for the Federal government to engage in spending the public’s money for charitable purposes. 

As Mr. Alexander writes: “James Madison, who said, most eloquently, ‘I cannot undertake to lay my finger on that article of the Constitution which granted a right to Congress of expending, on objects of benevolence, the money of their constituents….’ Madison further noted, ‘If Congress can do whatever in their discretion can be done by money, and will promote the General Welfare, the Government is no longer a limited one, possessing enumerated powers, but an indefinite one, subject to particular exceptions.’ ”

James Madison was by general agreement the most influential and encyclopedically informed single delegate at the 1787 Philadelphia convention that wrote the Constitution. 

In How Socialists Stole Liberalism I summarized the socialistic and totalitarian impulse inherent in the welfare state and the necessity to redistribute, by force, income from productive members of society to unproductive members who have not provided for their own maintenance:

“In a nut shell, Progressives, now called liberals, sincerely want to perfect society and improve the lot of every citizen.? But that requires us to give up individual liberties so that they can organize society properly.?

“As Mr. [Herbert] Croly [founding editor of The New Republic] put it, ?The Promise of American life is to be fulfilled - not merely by a maximum amount of economic freedom, but by a certain measure of discipline; not merely by the abundant satisfaction of individual desires, but by a large measure of individual subordination and self-denial…..In becoming responsible for the subordination of the individual to the demand of a dominant and constructive national purpose, the American state will in effect be making itself responsible for a morally and socially desirable distribution of wealth.?

Mr. Croly was merely following the path laid out by Otto von Bismarck, the head of government in the German Empire of the latter half of the 19th century.  Bismarck instituted the world’s first welfare state, as he candidly told the Reichstag, in order to make the German people dependent upon the Kaiser’s political state, thereby making it possible to herd them like cattle.

President Franklin Roosevelt understood this clearly.  By destroying the web of private and church charity organizations existing in 1935, Mr. Roosevelt made the people wards of the Democratic Party, while encouraging them not to save for their own futures. 

Keynesian socialistic economics, the new state-planning orthodoxy, preached that the Depression was caused by people saving too much and not spending enough.  What better way to buy votes?  Remove the citizens’ private charitable support groups by forcing them to pay Social Security taxes, then encourage the people to spend on consumer goods and forego savings.  In the end, under this socialistic regime, the politician who promises the biggest handouts, at the expense of “the wealthy,” will be almost impossible to defeat at election time.

Destructive aspects of the welfare state, and of Social Security in particular, have also been covered in:
Socialism’s French Labor Pains,
Poetic Justice for French Social Justice,
Should Big Brother be the Source of Charity?,
Only the Feds Can Help the Unfortunate?,
Worship the Secular State Whence All Blessings Flow?, and
Our Most Important Constitutional Right.