The Wealth Of Nations (or, Individuals, or What is Republicanism anyway?)

Time for a quiz. Guess where this quote came from earlier this week:

"I love it when I'm around the country club, and I hear people talking about the debilitating effects of a welfare society," he said. "At the same time, they leave their kids a lifetime and beyond of food stamps. Instead of having a welfare officer, they have a trust officer. And instead of food stamps, they have stocks and bonds."

A) A bleeding-heart liberal on the Bush administrations tax cuts to the wealthy
B) A billionaire investment mogul
C) A professional golfer
D) A New York Times editiorial interview with the president of MoveOn.org

Well, the answer is B - Warren Buffett - during an interview discussing his plans to give away over $30 BILLION dollars to charity.

Why is this noteworthy? Warren Buffett is a famous liberal Democrat - he opposes tax cuts, he is pro-estate tax, he complains that the taxes he pays on his home in Nebraska are too low, he supports welfare and public services - yet he is the worlds 2nd richest man, and is indirectly supporting the original intent of the Republican Party's agenda. He is giving his money to the foundation of the worlds richest man, Bill Gates (Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation), further supporting this idea.

Per Wikipedia, "In broad terms, Republicans believe the private sector is better suited than the bureaucratic government as the trust of a nation's direction and purpose." Essentially, the believe is that individuals more efficiently allocate funds to needy sectors of society than the government can, making taxation for this purpose ineffective. Furthermore, "the party founders adopted the name 'Republican' to indicate it was the carrier of 'republican' beliefs about civic virtue, and opposition to aristocracy and corruption." How far has Rebublicanism moved from this original mantra?! Conservatism, Rebublicanism - today they stand more for aristocracy, corruption, and greed than ever before, and it is the Democrats that have taken the moral high ground.

Is this a broader role-reversal? Are liberal Democrats the New Republicans? It's worth a few moments of pondering at least.

It would be nice of the Middle Eastern oil billionaires to act in the same way as their American counterparts and allocate even a fraction of their vast fortunes to their own societies. That's an entirely different blog...


Post a Comment

<< Home