Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Is taking bread from the mouths of those who labor to feed the appetites of able-bodied adults who decline to work your idea of economic justice?

Or of injustice?

A recent Cato Institute study by Michael Tanner and Charles Hughes found that welfare benefits exceed the minimum wage for workers in 35 states. In 15 states, welfare benefits top $31,200 annually — equivalent to the $15 an hour minimum wage that SEIU and other unions are promoting for fast-food workers.

In short, at the lowest rungs of the economy, one can make more money not working.

The Washington Post’s Charles Lane advances another aspect of economic justice in a recent column suggesting that while some wealth is merited, the bulk of the wealth swirling about in the nation’s capital is not earned, but wrested from a system where insider politics meets crony capitalism.

And Lane notes that “too many of our public institutions — from Congress to big-city school systems — have been captured by rent-seeking interest groups,” warning broadly that, “Various societies have grown free and prosperous by many different methods; dividing up existing wealth according to political connections is not one of them.”

Yesterday at Townhall, I embraced the idea of economic justice, calling for a healthy dose of it, namely:

  1. Stop making welfare pay better than work;
  2. End government subsidies to cronies, farmers, everyone;
  3. Let people create new businesses by ending licensing laws and regulations that serve only to block needed competition.

That’s economic justice.

Not futzing about trying to make us “equal,” but making the basic rules equitable.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. JFB says:

    There is little surprise to me there is a disincentive to work if the economic benefit for not working exceeds the reward, and in fact penalizes, employment.
    Work is work because most people would not do it for free.
    The “work ethic” died with the development of the “entitlement society”.
    Working is not an instinctual part of human, or any animals nature – just ask the rangers about the bears in Yellowstone.
    What is human nature is the willingness to rationally exchange with others in a mutually advantageous manner, whether that be labor, goods or some medium of exchange.
    In the case where no work advances the standard of living the choice is obvious, and the results catastrophic.

  2. Jim Rowen says:

    By this time we all have met or know personally folks that have been “milking” our welfare and unemployment policies. Yes, there are some that really need the help but the fact is that our churches and community organizations would step up (and do it more effectively) if the false philanthropy of government would step aside. The problem needs real leadership to successfully resolve these issues. They are not new and maybe we can get some perspective from a great privileged,, old, white man, “I am for doing good to the poor, but I differ in opinion of the means. I think the best way of doing good to the poor, is not making them easy in poverty, but leading or driving them out of it. In my youth, I traveled much, and I observed in different countries, that the more public provisions were made for the poor, the less they provided for themselves, and of course became poorer. And, on the contrary, the less was done for them, the more they did for themselves, and became richer.” Benjamin Franklin, On the Price of Corn and Management of the Poor (29 November 1766).

  3. …. insider politics meets crony capitalism ….

    Not it does not.

    It meets Cronyism, Corporatism, Statism, Fascism and/or any other of the many and various forms of totalitarianism — and by its any other name.

    But it comes nowhere near Capitalism.

    Which, like white paint, exists only in its pure and unadulterated form and ceases to be if in any way corrupted.

    Happy New Year, Brother Jacob!

    Brian Richard Allen:.

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