Welfare State: The Evil Agenda Behind the RH Bill
The only way to fight poverty is to guarantee economic freedom.
A blog commenter codenamed the_educator wrote: “First, let me just say that while I enjoyed the first half of the article, I think
the integrity of your article was compromised by you resorting to name-calling (free farters) and clear violations of Godwin’s Law (neo-Nazi). You also showed clear bias in calling out justinaquino’s grammatical errors while not mentioning Tamarindox’s. That being said, I’d like to proceed to the crux of this response. Your viewpoint is apparent when it comes to the role of government: the protection of the rights of the individual as opposed to it providing social services. This is an ideological and philosophical issue, you are espousing Objectivism and hold the same views as the GOP.” (Read the rest of the comment here.)
Here’s my reply:
This merely shows your inability to understand and digest concepts. You simply look at the terms I used as “name-calls” or smear terms without exerting some effort to understand why I used them. Here’s my friendly advice: don’t simply form an argument out of a single blog article. Have patience to understand the whole context of my anti-RH bill stance no matter how you detest or reject it by looking at my other anti-RH bill blogs. That’s a sign of intellectual honesty. Also, that would somehow show you’re interested to engage in a rational discussion. But whether or not you’re interested in my answer, let this be my readers’ guide to my anti-RH bill stance.
Here’s what you missed. You simply confused name-calling with identification. Name-calling per se (that is, without justification or showing any evidence to support one’s claim) is bad. In any discourse or debate, we have to identify our opponent- what is it that motivates him- why does he act or think in such a way- what’s the fundamental premise of his beliefs or arguments. Thus, identification is necessary no matter how harsh it may appear to the other party. When one is faced with an opponent, one has to identify the latter’s beliefs or ideology. The rule here is: know thy self and know thy enemy. This simply means that the “real” enemy is not the person, but the belief or ideology. One must not confuse an entity or a person with an ideology. The first is the “motivated”, as he embodies or acts on a particular premise, ideology or belief. The second is the motivator or the source of motivation.
Thus, what I mean is that an “identification” of a person’s belief or ideology is a form of moral judgment. Judge and be ready to be judged: this is the rule in a rational society. One must not hesitate to make a moral judgment.
My anti-reproductive health bill articles clearly show that I did not resort to name-calling (if one knows the proper meaning of this concept). I simply identified the ideological or philosophical “motivation” of my opponents—their belief system or that which motivates them to dogmatically cling on to their pro-RH bill position.
I am motivated by my pro-free market and pro-reason convictions. I don’t believe in welfare-statism or nanny statism. The pro-RH bill mob, which I strongly detest, is motivated by its knee-jerk belief that the government must provide the people, especially the poor, with their needs, that we are our brothers’ keepers, and that we must collectively contribute to the promotion of the common good or the greater good.
It is true that I used the term “neo-Nazism” to describe the ideology of these pro-RH bill fanatics. Observe that it is not the individual or the mob that I identified here, but the ideology. This is the difference between name-calling and identification. Name-calling is directed at the individual target regardless of his/her beliefs or motivation. Identification does the opposite; its purpose is to identify or to pick out that which motivates or moves the individual. Name-calling is an irrational, illogical method of argumentation, while identification is hinged on the concept or principle of causality, or the concept of cause and effect. In this contentious RH bill debate, the arguments and advocacy being espoused by the pro-RH bill mob is the effect of a cause: the statist/neo-Nazi ideology.
Now let’s define our terms.
Nazism is a form of statist or totalitarian ideology. There are many forms of statist or totalitarian ideologies, such as socialism, communism, fascism, theocracy, political Islamism, etc. These statist ideologies seek absolute control of the lives of the people, and diminish or even obliterate their freedom. Although Nazism was, historically speaking, strictly applied in Germany, it still bears striking resemblance to other totalitarian ideologies, like fascism and socialism. Nazism means National Socialism, and history tells us that Adolf Hitler and his top propagandist Joseph Goebbels tried their best to distinguish their party and ideology from that of Stalin’s socialism in order to avoid confusion.
In this post titled The Insane Logic of Stupid Socialists, I distinguish between Nazism, fascism and capitalism (these are not simply my views; they are based on historical facts):
- Communism, fascism, and capitalism are three terms with distinct meaning, concept, or definition.
- Fascism and capitalism do not have the same meaning and concept. In fact they are opposites.
- Fascism is about “radical and authoritarian” rule of a political despot, while capitalism is a political system that respects individual rights and recognizes the application of objective laws and legal principles.
- Communism is a collectivist political ideology that rejects individual rights, subjugates the individual to the collective, and regards man as the means to the ends of others or the state. Capitalism is the recognition that the individual is an end in himself and not the means to the ends of others.
- Communism and fascism are both a collectivist ideology.
For the benefit of those who embrace reason and who are still willing to think and to use their mind, let me lay down the similarities between Communism and Fascism. They are as follows:
- Both communism and fascism reject the concept of individual rights. Both regard the individual as the means to the ends of others. Capitalism does the opposite.
- Both communism and fascism are collectivist ideologies.
- Both communism and fascism are a form of totalitarian rule or dictatorship. Any individual may be sacrificed or immolated for the sake of common good, public welfare, or whatever the majority or the dictator deems as ‘practical’ or ‘necessary’ for the sake of the good of the majority or the state.
- Both communism and fascism negate the concept of private property. If communism regards private property as nonexistent, fascism regards private property as a political privilege that may only be given to a special class or group of people (e.g., cronies, czars, etc.)
- Both communism and fascism regard that political power may only be achieved through bloody revolution or class struggle.
- Both communism and fascism are racist ideologies. Karl Marx regarded the capitalist people or states as “racial trash”, while Adolf Hitler considered the Jews and ethnic minorities as lower forms of animal.
- Both communism and fascism are enemies of capitalism.
- Both communism and fascism consider the fact that killing is necessary to achieve their respective political or utopian goal.
So why do I call the pro-RH bill fanatics “neo-Nazis” and socialists. It’s because of the anti-freedom and anti-rights ideology that motivates them: statism. The pro-RH bill fanatics root for the government or the state to provide the people with their RH care needs. Is there anything wrong with this statist wish? Yes, morally and politically. We’ve been led or indoctrinated to believe that the state or the government is the people’s benevolent provider. As an advocate of capitalism and reason, I don’t believe that it’s the duty of the government to provide the people with their needs. The only proper role of government is to protect individual rights. The RH bill seeks to turn the government into a nanny state in the name of the welfare of the poor and women. More government welfare or roles means expanded state powers to rule our lives.
For example, the Nazi Party included the following point in its sweeping program: “The State has the duty to help raise the standard of national health by providing maternity welfare centers, by prohibiting juvenile labor, by increasing physical fitness through the introduction of compulsory games and gymnastics, and by the greatest possible encouragement of associations concerned with the physical education of the young.”
Of course one might argue that such a program was only implemented in Germany, but we are here talking about principles. A particular political policy with all its ramifications and provisions applied in one political setting cannot be exactly implemented or applied in another political setting. The important thing is the principle behind this statist policy. History has it that Nazi Germany was inspired by the eugenics or anti-population control program of the Spartans more than 2000 years ago. Both societies preached the virtue of common good and that every individual merely exists for the state.
The same principle is being applied in Cuba. Article 43 of the Cuban socialist 1992 Constitution states that “citizens, regardless of race, skin color, sex, religious belief, national origin and any situation that may be harmful to human dignity” be given not merely “health care in all medical institutions”, but also equal pay for equal work, education, etc.
That same principle is also being applied in Venezuela, North Korea, China, Sweden, and almost all socialist and statist slave pens on earth.
Again, strict reproducibility of these statist programs is not what is at stake here but PRINCIPLES.
The concept of protection of individual rights is indeed fundamentally opposed to a state-imposed provision of social services. Again, the latter is not the purpose of government. I’ve explained this issue many times in my previous blog posts. First, because the government is not a productive agency and, in fact, it is the most dependent entity on earth, meaning it relies on the people or the taxpayers for revenue or source of income. It means that more services require more government spending, and reality tells us that the government is currently suffering from huge budget deficit and huge foreign debt.
Second, since the government is already cash-strapped, the only way for it to provide the many statist promises of the RH bill is to turn to businessmen and health care providers. We are not Sweden– or we don’t enjoy the benefits of the early capitalist period of Sweden wherein it was still economically strong. Sweden was “somehow” able to provide universal health care, education, etc. to its people because of the success of its capitalist past before 1960s, or precisely before the rise of the socialists and leftists. It is socialism that drained the wealth produced by Sweden’s capitalist past following the rise of socialism. When welfare statism was established in Sweden by its socialist politicians, it had the wealth and money to support it because of its successful free-market past, but it was the statist policies that drove businessmen and professionals away and bankrupted the country.
How about us? Do we have anything or wealth to start with? Nothing! We don’t have any successful capitalist past that would have provided the government with enough financial backing to support and sustain its welfare statist goals. We are already bankrupt and we would be more so should we implement this socialist RH bill. Is this hard to understand? Instead of pumping more controls and regulations into our troubled economy, our politicians should start facing reality. Controls and regulations do not create wealth simply because they stunt economic freedom, which is a sine qua non to economic progress. Winnie Monsod’s confused economics cannot save this country.
I provided here how the RH bill would impact our economy, our rights and freedom.
It is true that I’m motivated by the philosophy of Objectivism. But what is Objectivism in the first place? This philosophy holds reason as an absolute—that man is an end in himself, not the means to the ends of others— and it tells an individual how to live his life, properly and rationally. It is an all-encompassing philosophy, and not merely a political ideology. Objectivism tells every rational man that the only proper and moral political system is Capitalism because it is consistent with man’s nature and rights. Man’s nature holds that man is not a sacrificial animal—that he must use reason in order to survive—that he must not violate or disrespect the rights of others by initiating the use of force. Man’s rights hold that man can only survive in a rights-respecting society, where he is entitled to his life, liberty, property and his pursuit of happiness. Objectivism rejects any form of statism and the use of physical force and fraud.
I find it pathetic- a good example of anti-intellectualism and intellectual laziness- that people dismiss my anti-RH bill position by simply pointing out that it is founded on Objectivism without understanding what this philosophy is all about. By the way, the GOP or the Republican Party is NOT an Objectivist party. Objectivism, like any philosophy (e.i., Arstotelianism, Platism or Kantianism), is engaged in a philosophical battle of our time; it is not a political movement. In fact, the GOP had long been hijacked by religious conservatives who aspire to establish theocracy in America.
I can also use the same trick by asking: “what’s the ideological or philosophical basis of the RH bill?” The answer is socialism or statism, of course. As a country, we should found our political and economic system on reality-based principles. Many societies collapsed because their systems were based on fantasy or non-reality. Capitalism is a system that’s fundamentally hinged on reality, as it is consistent with man’s nature and rights.
On the other hand, the government cannot legislate poverty away simply because legal mechanisms, which are in reality forms of impediment, do not help in or contribute to the creation of wealth. It is utterly wrong to assume that the government can solve poverty by spending money on it. In the first place, where will the government get the money or wealth? The government does not produce wealth; it merely depends upon those who produce or create it. This clearly shows that the philosophy, ideology, science, economics and politics of the pro-RH bill mob are utterly wrong in all respects.
The notion that a government should spend its way out of poverty is what motivated and continue to motivate statist politicians and dictators who bankrupted their own countries. This notion is embodied in non-reality based economic principles and concepts such as Keynesianism or Keynesian economics, monetarism, Soviet Russia’s Gosplan, Mikhail Gorbachev’s perestroika, U.S. Federal Reserve’s quantitative easing, among others. Economic fantasy or non-reality economics is what a mad politician named Robert Mugabe implemented in Zimbabwe that caused great poverty and misery to his people. Mugabe embarked on debt monetization to fight poverty and to provide the needs of his people, meaning he printed tons and tons of paper money out of nothing when no one was actually producing wealth in his country. This neo-mystic approach (since Mugabe is a political quack doctor) led to what is known as hyperinflation wherein a loaf of bread in Zimbabwe in 2008 cost $7 million. Why did Mugabe do that? It’s because his programs were concentrated on universal health care, free education, etc. In short: welfare state. This confirms that old maxim that the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Also in Zimbabwe, there’s no such thing as economic freedom and individual rights are not duly protected- or even flagrantly violated- by the Mugabe regime.
The same principle is being applied in the United States by President Barack Obama. Since the enactment of the Obama care (a law that would provide free health care to millions of Americans) in 2009, the Federal Reserve has started printing tons and tons of paper money out of thin air, a statist act that threatens not merely America’s middle class, but also every dollar holder worldwide, China in particular. And since America no longer has the money to support its welfare state programs, particularly the Obamacare, and since it can no longer borrow another one trillion dollar from China, it resorted to a money-making magical trick called quantitative easing that allows the Federal Reserve to pump another $600 billion into America’s ailing economy. This means that the Obama government has just printed another tons and tons of paper money out of thin air and that the rest of the world would be severely affected. Inflation, financial crisis, and more government controls and regulations are just some of the many consequences of Welfare Statism. Welfare state is the idea that the government must babysit its people from womb to tomb- that it has to protect its people from themselves- that it has to play an indispensable role in the lives of its inhabitants.
Ideas have consequences. If implemented, the RH bill, which is a welfare statist idea, would have negative consequences on our ailing economy, freedom and rights. Every onerous political program (e.i., a program that requires fiscal backing) relies on the financial backbone of our economy. One cannot merely say: “why should we worry about the source of funding?” This kind of mentality is what bankrupted most societies in the past and even today. Look at Greece wherein its socialist politicians established welfare statism. Greece’s economic downfall affected the whole EU bloc simply because the economies of Europe are attached to the euro. Thankfully, Greece and all members of the European Union cannot print their own paper money.
The only way to fight poverty is to guarantee economic freedom. The case of Hong Kong is the best example I could give. Several decades ago, we were richer and more economically stable compared to Hong Kong. This tiny state did not achieve economic success by establishing welfare statism or spending its way out of poverty. Hong Kong is rich and successful because of its less intrusive economic and political climate. For example, tariff or duty is not imposed on products shipped into Hong Kong. Also, taxes are levied only on particular products, such as automobiles, gasoline, tobacco, and alcohol. This is beneficial to both Hong Kong nationals and importers, including businessmen and investors, because goods are cheap in this Chinese territory. In fact, this reality-based policy is the best way to fight poverty.
By contrast, foreign investors leave and avoid the Philippines because of its too intrusive economic and political environment, graft and corruption, bribery, and too much corporate and business-related taxes, as the total tax rate that businesses pay after profits goes as high as 45 percent. Apart from threatening to implement RH programs in the country, our Congress also plan to implement universal health care and antitrust law, statist proposals that are utterly anti-business and anti-economic freedom.
If the pro-RH bill mob had any brains, they would have understood that the RH bill is a very intrusive regulatory mechanism. Its provisions on “employers’ responsibility” will definitely discourage both local and foreign businessmen to invest in the Philippines. Since employers would be obliged by law or at the point of gun to provide their workers with RH care services, the former would be compelled to increase the prices of their products and services, thus affecting consumers. The government cannot simply prohibit employers from increasing the prices of their commodities and services by imposing price controls, otherwise businesses would go bankrupt or be forced to close. This is what is happening now in America.
Just recently, Barack Obama issued 111 Obamacare waivers, exempting several companies, particularly those with political connections, from spending too much health care on their workers. And don’t ever tell me that Obama care is different from our RH bill. Yes, they are different in terms of label/name and scope, but they are based on the same principle: welfare statism and government control. Several companies, which include McDonalds, Olive Garden, Red Lobster and Jack in the Box are among the large, headline-garnering employers appealed to the Obama administration for temporary waivers because they cannot strictly provide the health care needs of their workers without laying off or firing some of their workers.
If this is what’s happening now in America, do you, pro-RH bill fanatics, have any assurance that this welfare state tragedy won’t happen in the Philippines?
Think! This is our only way out of poverty and dictatorship.
- NOTE: I don’t share the Catholic, religious arguments against the RH bill. I offer a secularist view founded on reason, objective law and the nature and rights of man. Check the anti-RH bill blog articles HERE.