Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

14 April 2010

Ed Hudgins -- Producers vs. Expropriators: America's Coming Civil War?

I like this essay by Edward Hudgins of The Atlas Society entitled Producers vs. Expropriators: America's Coming Civil War?  Please go and read it.

But, I also want to urge upon all of you the need to enlarge our argument with socialism even beyond the important Producers vs. Expropriators conflict.  Socialism does not recognize our right to be individuals who think for ourselves, choose our own values, and then act to live our lives in accordance with our own values and goals.  Socialists are not just expropriators of wealth and income, they are also dictators who force us to ignore our own minds and values and harness all of our actions to their dictated ideas, values, and goals.  There are many Americans of modest productivity, who may appear to be net beneficiaries of the expropriation of wealth and income, but who are very upset by the idea that someone else, such as a socialist elite, will force them to live their lives by values they have not chosen for themselves.  Many of the Tea Party protesters are people of modest productivity, but they simply want badly to have the right to manage their own lives according to their own values.  The guy who wants to work less and have lots of time for his family and for fishing is still an individual who often does not want Obama telling him he must buy health insurance acceptable to the government or send his daughter to a college the government finds acceptable for attendance by students with government student loans.

More broadly, the basic conflict is between individualist self-managers and brutal collectivist dictators, with most wealth producers on the individualist self-managers side, but many are also on the brutal collectivist dictators side.  The producers on the collectivist and value-imposing side are sometimes there due to guilt, sometimes to simply being prey to indoctrination, and sometimes because they see that as the way to protect the wealth against the socialists that they worked hard to build up.  Nonetheless, they have joined the enemy and we need to realize that some of our allies are not necessarily people who are highly productive of wealth and income.  They are simply self-managing individualists.

Postscript [15 April 2010, Southbury, CT]:  I first skimmed through Ed Hudgins essay when rushing to finish a ton of work including tax returns for business and personal purposes before heading to Connecticut to provide expert witness testimony in a court case.  I missed the fact that Ed has a short paragraph discussing some of the points I am making here.  Still, I believe these points need to be strongly emphasized.

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