Poor Conservatives: Compounding Idiocy with Hypocrisy
"If the minimum wage doubles, so will the cost of a Big Mac."
"If you think medical care is expensive today, wait until you see the cost when it is free."
"Social Security is not an entitlement. Welfare is an entitlement."
If you find yourself agreeing with the above statements, you are, at the least, out of touch with economic principles and economic realities.
The first statement presumes that there is virtually no margin of profit between the cost to produce a Big Mac and the price of one. In fact, the company is so profitable that its CEO earns more in a month than most people will earn in a lifetime. Shareholders earn dozens of times more on their holdings of the company’s stock than they could possibly earn on a typical bank investment. The company could easily double the wages of its workers, and still be highly profitable. Perhaps even more profitable if they were to consider that by doubling its workers wages, its workers could afford to buy Big Macs.
The second statement presumes that it somehow will cost more for people to have free healthcare than it does to deny people free healthcare only to have them show up at emergency rooms to seek treatment they will not be paying for because of minor illnesses. It also presumes that treatment that is not paid for somehow evaporates into the ether rather than the cost being passed on to insurance companies and people who can pay for medical care. It is far less expensive to pay for preventative care to a clinic than it is to pay for a remedy for an illness that lingered past the preventative stage and rises to an emergency level, especially considering we are paying for it in either circumstance.
The third statement presumes alteration of the word "entitlement" to mean "hand out" or "safety net." Social Security recipients are entitled to receive their benefits. The same is true of retired military personnel, government pensioners, and disabled retirees. These things are entitlements. People who applaud when a politician talks of reducing entitlements are not understanding that the politician is including legitimate entitlements with hand outs and safety nets. Futhermore, most of the people who support these reductions seem to have little understanding that farm and research subsidies, production of weapons the military does not want, and tax loopholes through which corporations avoid hundreds of billions, if not trillions, of dollars in tax revenue are far more expensive than all the welfare programs put together. Favoring the cutting of welfare programs for poor people while ignoring welfare programs for the rich and powerful is quite similar to paying a rich person ten dollars to steal a penny from a hungry kid.
While spouting off conservative values may make a poor person seem tough and extremely well endowed, it really does not make them stronger nor give them larger breasts or penises. Those things would be the same even if they were sensible and compassionate.
Going beyond the mere idiot factor of poor people supporting today’s conservative values, many, if not most, of those people have been beneficiaries of what are coined as liberal ideals.
The working class who earn minimum wage or more, get paid time-and-a-half for overtime, and enjoy a five day work week, or get paid extra to give up their days off, have unions and liberal ideals to thank for those benefits that were once denied workers employed by the "great capitalists" of the nineteenth century. They also owe them thanks for safety procedures, safe workplaces, paid holidays, benefits, and many other things these people seem to believe they somehow earned independently from the struggles of people who lived before them and for which they fought.
Those who espouse conservative values, but have received medical care without paying for it because of Medicaid, Medicare, or provider forgiveness, nutritional supplement in the form of food stamps or WIC, or receive additional tax return for Earned Income Credit or Daycare Credit, can add hypocrisy to the idiocy of the working class conservative. They should be praising such liberal programs as these rather than claiming others who do the same things they do are freeloaders, while, apparently, exempting themselves from the status as a freeloader, or at least not confessing that they, too, are undeserving freeloaders.
I have lived through the times when my father was able to provide a middle class lifestyle while my mother took care of their children, to both me and my wife needing to work to maintain a lower middle class existence, to today when people my children’s ages need both parents working and still qualify for assistance. If the trend continues, my grandchildren will have no chance for anything but poverty unless they, or someone in their lineage, hits the lottery.
There is so much truth in this quote by Ronald Wright: "Socialism never took root in America because the poor see themselves not as an exploited proletariat but as temporarily embarrassed millionaires."
Most of the wealth in this nation was not earned by the wealthy. It was inherited.
Therefore, the wealthy do not deserve to enjoy virtually every dollar of growth in wealth at the expense of the middle class becoming working poor, the working poor becoming impoverished, and the impoverished becoming homeless and hopeless. They simply do not deserve to benefit both from birthright, and the labor of those who were not as lucky to be born wealthy like they were.
The trend must change, and it is up to those who will benefit from that change to stand up to the oligarchs who believe the common person has no inherent right to eat, drink clean water, or a snowball’s chance in hell of improving his or her prospects of a decent life by working hard.
It is idiotic to believe the trend will change if the beneficiaries of the current trend are less restrained. It is hypocritical to have benefitted from liberal ideology and speak against it. It is idiotic hypocrisy, or hypocritical idiocy if you prefer, to do both.
Some other things I've written about: