My friend Stephen Thomas Kirschner posted the following :
I keep seeing all these posts freaking out about all the cuts that this incoming administration is going to make to government spending.
People, the national debt is almost $20 trillion. We’ve been living beyond our means for decades. This can’t last indefinitely.
I share the sentiment and did not think much needed to be added so besides some parody of an argument for more government spending with “But but but my entitlements.” Below the subsequent conversation.
KeTru : what entitlements are you speaking of ? I hear this a lot but i rarely see it quantified in a way that actually costs much of anything
Me : People do not have a right to services or goods that are funded through taxation. The government may locally provide them but I shall continue mocking it. Are people worth helping? Yes. Do people fall onto hard times where they cannot provide? Yes. Do any two people let alone groups have the same access? No. Can they ever? No. is this bad? No.
KeTru : But you still haven’t answered the question what entitlements. you use that word in a way i don’t think you understand what it really means or what it entails. You are entitled to what the constitution says you are entitled to. Historically States have decided to add a social safety net due to the fact that failing to have one ends up costing the taxpayer more in the long run. Social programs that people think of as entitlements often server a different purpose that people think. They get all up in arms over things without thinking about what happens when those things don’t exist. A good example is Colorado they decided to start funding free contraceptives and then watched teenage pregnancy drop 30%. since those young mothers were generally from poor back grounds they were setting up new kids for failure and cost to the state. Projected cost savings is in the billions for a cheap program. so as i said things arent always what they seem.
Me : As for ‘quantified in a way that actually costs much of anything.’
The choice in words…did you do this with conscious intent?
-“Quantified in a way” : it either costs or doesn’t, it shouldn’t have much to do with a way of how its done. I know stats can be skewed and things reported in misleading ways.
-“actually costs…anything” : when you said quantified that makes one think of goods, money or currency. Though opening it up to anything makes me think of the ultimate cost, which is time. Everything costs time. Spending time answering this to you cost me the time plus the currency and services exchanged to maintain the internet and everything else involved. I fin it worth it as Stephen is cool and also I can use this as a blog post. (by the way thanks for that, shall not use your name.)
-“much of anything” : who gets to decide what much is. As many say the right need to pay their fair share. So a billionaire may pay 1 million which is more than 100 middle class people may. Some would however consider that not much of anything.
Me : wanted to answer that last sentence separately.
Me : The government may locally provide them but I shall continue mocking it. It corrected to locally. Meant legally.
KeTru : I was careful in what i used because not all costs are monetary in nature. this all goes back to entitlement, what is an entitlement or what is a benefit that is long term saver of money and lives
KeTru : You will mock them until you need to use one as is always the case unless you are a millionaire
Me : ” Do people fall onto hard times where they cannot provide? Yes. Do any two people let alone groups have the same access? No. Can they ever? No. is this bad? No.”
Saying much more would cost more than any perceived benefit. thank you truly for the exchange. No mockery in that whatsoever.
KeTru : I agree no two people or groups can have equal access as the system in the states is now. But there are certainly areas where equal access and ability to use it are possible
KeTru : and yes thank you for the exchange
Me : Ah, excuse me read what you said and possible benefit has been found. Can tie this up using your initial comment. what certain areas are you speaking of ? I hear this a lot but i rarely see it quantified in a way that actually describes any specific areas.
Apparently more could have been said.