Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Problem with Politics

The problem with politics is a lot simpler than most will believe.

What we have here is a failure to communicate. No, wait, don't run, this is not another touchy-feely let's all get along bloviation fest.

We, the public, have been fed a false dichotomy and we've been lapping it up for decades. The divisions between viewpoints have been turned into attack politics that won't allow us to accept any ideas from the the evil idiots on the other side.

The left needs to understand that many of their policies help provide a strong economy and further enrichment of and participation in the business class.

The right needs to understand that finding ways to improve peoples economic standing does not need to mean funding excesses or otherwise creating unwanted negative side effects.

There is always a grain of value, somewhere, in the policies and viewpoints of the other side. Frankly, this seems to be a lost secret of democracy. As long as corruption is not driving policy there is human thought and value being applied to issues that we should all try to understand.

I'll try to outline an example of combining the values of both sides so that in a normal world we'd be able to move forward and achieve some real progress.

Cue transition music.

Imagine if you will a land with many rich people lamenting the state of a underclass that somehow has not managed to find the same success as others. Rich people naturally assume their success is related to their own personal qualities and this naturally leads them to imagine that others are lazy, make bad decisions and otherwise simply do not deserve to succeed.

On the other hand there is also a large group of bleeding heart folks, loving their neighbor as Jesus commands of them, wanting in good faith to help the underclass. These folks believe that everyone is a saint and will do good things if only they are helped long enough for them to see the light.

Cue surprising discovery jingle.

Both groups actually want the same thing. Both groups want the underclass to somehow become more productive members of society. One group wants to punish those that don't contribute as much to the economy as they and the other wants to help but does so in way that is often a disincentive to long term changes.  Both groups discourage what they want!

The right need to stop worrying about opposing left. The left need to stop worrying about opposing the right. There is a simple solution but our politics won't let us take it.

The left need to economically justify intervention by the right to fix the situation. For example, if the underclass can be made more productive costs to society will be reduced. Drug use, violent crime, prison costs and direct financial support will all fall. Tax revenues, consumer spending and national economic strength will all rise.

Everyone is for this shit!

Specifically, the rich who are always suggesting that government is not necessary to solve these crises needs to get off its collective ass and prove it.

The uber wealthy can comb the underclass zones, find quality people who are working hard in those conditions, and invest in entrepreneurial activity. If there are no suitable people right now they can create a small private school and generate small groups of people who are capable of succeeding. These are small investments to the uber class and there are sure to be government programs or donations available to reduce the risk of this investment.

Now this is where the magic happens. As we start to pump out well educated people able to demonstrably earn and honest living we start to change the nature of the community. People see positive examples, they give each other increased opportunity, and pockets of entrepreneurial success can spread. Frankly, its the American dream, it just needs a little jump start here and there to break through the inertia.

The result of having pockets of uber wealthy invest in the success of their fellow citizens would be all the things they claim to want. They want to reduce taxes. Reducing the costs to society of non-productive citizens, even small groups at a time, as well as increasing the tax revenues that these groups contribute will immediately allow the tax burden to be lowered. They will be able to demonstrate that government is not the only way to solve societies problems -- as the current lip service to this effect is not sufficient.

Continuing down this road, in the long term, leads to an incredibly strong and vibrant economy with a vast participation in all sectors of the populace. The tax burdens that society chooses to bear will be much lighter on all involved. The economy will be to support education, a strong military, national security concerns, research and development of new technologies to overcome world changes, and peace and good will on Earth.

Okay, I snuck in that last part to see if you were paying attention.

In any case, I think you can see that the outcome is surely supported by both liberals and conservatives. Liberals really do not want to keep mass groups of unhappy populace around on the tax dole just for the chance to get a few votes. Liberals also don't really want to pay higher taxes either. Conservatives get to prove the values they are always espousing in terms of an ability to achieve public good without need for government involvement. They also achieve a stronger economy that allows them to make more money and compete more effectively within the global community.

Imagine that. Everyone wins.

How come we aren't clamoring for everyone wins politics? Why are we allowing our attention to be directed to attacking others viewpoints instead of solving the issues that we can? Is it because of static ideologies? Is it because having the populace divided and focused on petty issues allows those with power and influence to enrich themselves with less effort while we are all distracted?

Now, I'll also put the shoe on the other foot.

We liberals also have uber wealthy. Why in the heck are we not doing this ourselves? We don't need to turn to a nanny government to achieve these things. We should be able to find a way to make this use of funds a good investment that delivers a good return.

Finally, I'll decry those who decry the less productive.

Stop judging, blaming and criticizing. The result of such activity is exactly the opposite of what you want. Segments of society get angry and resist everything you are trying to say. Honestly, it isn't very Christian either. Perhaps that's the basis of the "judge not" advice that somebody once tried to give us.  I don't know but washing our hands of those that we could in fact teach how to fish is not the right road.

It's the start of new year. Let's get beyond the ideological bullshit and make shit happen.

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