Monday, August 1, 2011
William Voegeli: State of The Welfare State: Not a good State
The State of the Welfare State at least in America as well in several other Developed Nations, is not good in the sense that we are all thinking about how to reform them. To make them more Cost Effective and save money on them, because at least in America's case we are currently facing a huge generation of people. That are going to be eligible for them and we don't currently have the resources to pay these obligations, even though these people have been paying into them their whole adult lives if not longer. For people who worked jobs as adolescents for example and most of us including myself probably have. This is good news in a sense from my point of view as a liberal who believes in Individual Liberty and Limited Government. And that the Welfare State should be exactly that, only for the people who need it and that everyone who can take care of themselves and are financially Self Sufficient on their own. Should stay that way and take care of themselves, that Tax Payers shouldn't be funding the retirement, Health Insurance, Health Care Unemployment Insurance etc of millionaires and billionaires unless they worked in Public Service for a lot time lets say twenty years. This is good news from my perspective, because its just more evidence that America will never have a Swedish Style Welfare State, americans who can will always be expected to take care of themselves. Americans who can fiance their own Health Insurance will be expected to and so fourth, that americans who can will be expected to take care of themselves will have to. That we'll never see in America 50, 60, 70% Tax Rates especially on the Middle Class or overall Tax Bills like that on americans. That our government will always be limited and smaller then Europe and hopefully more limited and smaller in the future.
Having said all of that, I not in favor or never have been in favor of slashing our Welfare State and throwing people off of it who actually do need these Social Insurance programs. And how can we do this and have a Federal Government more limited and smaller. Everyone who needs these programs now and into the future will keep collecting from them but the people who are physically and mentally capable of working. Will be expected to do so and if they are not working because they lack the skills that they need to get a good enough job to become Self Sufficient. Then they would get help in getting that by going to school and getting those skills.
But here's a major reform, I would take the Welfare State off the hands and backs of the Federal Government. And unlike what Libertarian Presidential Candidate Gary Johnson wants to, which is essentially hand the Welfare State over to the State and Local Governments. I would give all of these Social Insurance programs their independence so to speak. And make them independent of the Federal Government but still owned by them at least in the short term. But they would be operated independently with their own Revenue Sources, as well as Management and Board of Directors that they would select on their own.
The State of the American Welfare State as far as the financing of it in the future is not good, in the sense that its another problem we have to fix. But its good at least in my perspective that we'll probably never expand it in any significant way at least from the Federal Level. And this gives us an opportunity to rethink what the purpose of our Welfare State is and how best to reform it.