Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
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13-06-2012, 02:56 PM
Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
I often find myself between people associating themselves as either for small government or for government regulations, and realizing none of the people are actually for big or small government. Both groups of individuals want government involved in certain areas and not in others. A hands off on everything is bad because how many psychopaths does it take to turn a state into a terror zone, and how many regulations does it take before were living the novel 1984.

In my opinion, the government should have areas it's allowed to govern, and areas it is not allowed to govern. Education and health care are something that everyone should have access to and it should be of high quality, regardless of income of any individual. Clean drinking water, the ability to walk home from work without muggings and rape. To have a practicing Hindu, Christian, Muslim, Zionist, and atheist all living on the same street and no one cares what the other chooses to do or not do.
The other side of the coin is, I feel that investors shouldn't be allowed to give loans to someone they know can't pay and then sell that loan to another investor, that the most profitable industries in the world doesn't deserve free money and not have to give anything back. I believe that if an energy company acquires a patent, they are obligated to do something with it within 5 years or it goes back to the free market, that it is illegal for a company to buy out his competitors and then close all of his branches because there is no point in having two locations that close to each other.

It's a brass ring that may never be won, but if you don't ever try, you have already lost.
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13-06-2012, 08:27 PM
RE: Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
As a staunch right wing libertarian (which is where I get into a lot of political debates because like nobody is a right wing libertarian, they're either fully right wing or fully communist) I believe the government should be involved in things such as education and health like you mention. I also believe some things the government has to do because nobody else would, ie: street lighting, police, water and sewerage, firefighting in large towns/cities, welfare etc..

As for the private sector, well.. free range. Obviously some things are good to regulate such as monopolies but things like borrowing money to people who can't afford it? I'm sorry but if you can't afford to borrow, don't borrow!
As for the bails out, ehhh its tricky. I agree to an extent that it gives an impression that if you're a big company ie: General Motors, then you can make risky business investments or cheap but inefficient business practices and not worry that when shit hits the fan because you'll get a massive government bailout.
(You watch, after those big bail outs I guarantee risky business investment went up by massive corporations).
But I don't know the strings attached to those bailouts so I can't fully comment. The strings attached would need to be a deterrent to other companies. On the other hand if some of these companies didn't receive a bailout then the consequences would be a colossal domino effect disaster.

Problem? Don't buy their cars.

I think government is there as a sort of shadow in our lives. They provide tools such as education or a safe environment and what we do with our lives is ultimately up to us. I think people forget that "we the people" made the government to "serve" the people, not to control them.

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13-06-2012, 08:46 PM
RE: Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
Government's size should match its function. The main question is about efficiency. It should be big enough to do its job, but no bigger. I think we can more or less all agree on that.

The next question then becomes "what should the functions of government be?". I tend to lean a little bit to the right on this one in saying that government should not take on functions that can be fulfilled outside of government either by private business or private charities.

The next question becomes "What are the functions that cannot be fulfilled outside of government but can be fulfilled within government?". Here I lean back to the left a little and identify health, education, defence, criminal law, commercial law, industrial relations law, and many other things. There are areas within many of the service-delivery arms of government where government can take a governance role rather than a service delivery role by hiring businesses or charities to deliver its services, and I see that as a good thing where it can occur.

My preference is for a government that lays down laws and regulates industries with a minimum of involvement in the actual service delivery. Still, I can see areas of service delivery where it is difficult or inefficient to employ private labour - such as health and defence. In the end, I end up somewhere close to the political centre on this question.

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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14-06-2012, 02:35 PM
RE: Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
Government should in no way interfere with people civil rights and personal freedoms,however it should be somewhat more involved in economy and nationalize certain sectors,like Healthcare,Education,Energy,Public transport etc...
In other words,provide for the people and guarantee them personal freedoms and financial security.

The meaning of peace is the absence of opposition to socialism.
-Karl Marx


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14-06-2012, 03:13 PM
RE: Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
This is why I consider myself a conservative rather than a Libertarian. I think the government has a role in protecting the rights of citizens, monitioring business for abuses, public transit etc but I think taxes and involvemnet should be kept to the bare minimum. I also do not want the most vulnerable in society thrown to the wolves.

Where I differ with Libertatians is they tend too far to the hands off approach. The Left tends too far toward government control. Now with the religious right taking over the right I'm now a man without a party.

" Generally speaking, the errors in religion are dangerous; those in philosophy only ridiculous."
David Hume
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15-06-2012, 02:50 AM
RE: Not happy with the big/small gov't dichotomy
(14-06-2012 02:35 PM)znk666 Wrote:  Government should in no way interfere with people civil rights and personal freedoms,..
Unless those freedoms start to infringe on other people's rights and freedoms. And although you might think "Yes of course, that's a no brainer", this is where a lot of people disagree. Should the government tell you how to raise your kids? What if they're being abused? What if you and I disagree over the definition of abuse? What about discrimination? Can the government intervene when someone is being discriminated against? What if it's a private business? What if we disagree over the definition of discrimination? What about drugs? Where does the government draw the line over what drugs you're allowed to put in your systerm? Or what food?

And should zombies be allowed the right to exist if they're not hurting anyone?

"But the point is, find somebody to love. Everything else is overrated." - HouseofCantor
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