"Liberte, egalite, et fraternite" -- "Liberty, equality and brotherhood."
The motto of the French Revolution, which began in 1789.
The French Revolution was the first manifestation of modern socialist ideology.
"From each according to his means. To each according to his needs." -- Karl Marx, 1875.
"The problem with socialism is that sooner or later, you run out of other people's money." -- Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, 1979-90.
Ayn Rand, a political/economic philosopher, who was born in Russia and immigrated to the United States, was a "Founding Mother" of the Libertarian ideology.
Her magnum opus was the book, "Atlas Shrugged."
The title of the book is never addressed in the content, but the reader's mind is pre-conditioned with the idea of what would happen if the god Atlas, who's job it was to hold up the Earth in space upon his shoulder, shrugged.
Briefly, this fabulous book is about an obnoxious, arrogant, ego-driven, super-rich inventor and capitalist, Hank Rearden.
Hank Rearden has no concern for the "public good," in any way, shape or form, but only cares about earning as large a profit as he can.
What would happen if people like Hank Rearden simply dropped out, disappeared and abandoned their businesses?
This is the background in the book as we follow Mr. Rearden as he struggles against government regulation and populist condemnation of greed to preserve his business and make it thrive.
The State of California is very concerned about the less fortunate among us.
If you qualify as less fortunate, the State of California will try to provide for your every need until you can get back on your feet.
You will be fed, housed, provided health care, free tuition, grants for training and provided various sundry other types of aid.
What would happen if Arizona, Nevada and Oregon abolished all aid to the poor and taxed the poor at the same rate as all others?
The poor would probably migrate to neighboring California.
What would happen if the wealthy people of California, tired of the high tax rates and burdensome regulations on their businesses, moved to more welcoming states in the Midwest and Southeast?
If California were filled with takers and the makers left, in short order, the state would collapse.
In recent years, the code of federal regulations has doubled in size.
With the implementation of the new socialized medicine law and other stimulus related projects, the code appears that it will grow by another 50 percent in the next few years.
Moving from one state to another won't preserve you from federal regulations written by people who have never run a business.
The United States has the second highest corporate tax rate in the world, second only to Japan.
We have among the highest federal income tax rates in the world.
Moving from one state to another won't allow a business to stay competitive with foreign producers or producers in the domestic underground economy.
We have finally reached the point that 51 percent of Americans receive cash or cash equivalent "benefits" from the government.
Benefits that have to be paid somehow by someone.
What would happen if the makers simply gave up and quit making or simply moved to someplace more friendly?
As the book "Atlas Shrugged," comes to a close, Hank Rearden is among the last of the capitalists fighting for the preservation of his business, standing up to the highest powers in the government, as the world around him falls apart.
Eventually, he too disappears and abandons his business to the government-sponsored functionaries who would try to operate it as they tried to operate all of the other businesses abandoned by their founders.
An interesting, if unrelated, little factoid is that the Food Stamp Program, administered by the United States Department of Agriculture, is proud to be distributing the greatest amount of free meals and food stamps ever, to 46 million grateful people in need.
Meanwhile, the National Park Service, administered by the United States Department of the Interior, asks us "please do not feed the animals."
Their stated reason for the policy is because the animals will grow dependent on handouts and will not learn to take care of themselves.