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L. Neil Smith's
Number 681, July 29, 2012

"UN Small Arms Treaty Dead!"

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The Way It Works
by L. Neil Smith

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Attribute to L. Neil Smith's The Libertarian Enterprise

A local radio host, who—pretty cynically, in my view—opposes American presence in the middle east because he believes it's futile, is fond of explaining his position by saying, "You can't beat a birth rate."

If I had a nickel for every time I've heard conservatives whimper that they're being "out-bred", by minorities, clients of the welfare state, or Third World enemies, I'd ... well, I'd have a whole lot of nickels.

Often, in these matters, I offer good-natured advice, but they always pretend not to hear, sometimes out of inertia (a polite word for laziness), often because they stand to gain more—in the short run—from whatever they're complaining about, than they stand to lose.

American civilization is on the Eve of Destruction, they whine, because it's being flooded by new populations who lack any background in the philosophy of individual liberty or the corresponding philosophy of the free market. You can't call either one an ideology. All known ideologies are merely sets of conflicting excuses for limiting the freedom of the individual. Individualism is the absence of ideology, just as the free market is the absence of an economic system.

So I ask, in as innocent-sounding a tone as I can manage, if the problem is that you feel overwhelmed, either by immigrants, both legal or otherwise, or by waves of children born to a subculture of welfare and entitlement, why don't you conservatives simply have more babies, yourselves?

Having, for some mysterious reason or another, failed to receive an answer of any kind from these conservatives over the last couple of decades (it's a little like asking them, if they think that war is such a marvelous idea, why so many of them have declined to serve in the military), I guess I'll just have to make up an answer or two, myself.

A possibility that immediately comes to mind is that, having had one or two kids already, conservatives wives have discovered that there are other things in life they prefer to nine months of carrying around a bowling ball that they can't put down. Or perhaps they have foregone the excruciating pleasure of actually expelling these pointy little heads and shoulders from their bodies, which I've often heard compared to passing a kidney stone the size of that bowling ball I mentioned.

Robert Heinlein said that whenever the question is "Why don't they ... ?" the answer usually involves money. Somebody recently estimated that it costs about a million dollars to raise a kid from the womb to a room in a dorm. Conservative wives and their husbands might prefer owning a bigger, nicer house, perhaps with a two- or three-car garage where there's no room for Grandma's antique bedstead because it's full of pretty new Japanese, German, Swedish or even Detroit iron. Hot tubs, magazine-cover kitchens, and bathrooms of the future all fit into the picture somewhere, as well as wall-sized TV screens and a boat.

And of course existing children will enjoy a higher standard of living without a bunch of extra little siblings running around underfoot.

I'm fairly certain it costs considerably more to raise a child of the Parasitic Class—given that it's government, being what it is, and all, doing the raising—than it does to raise a Productive Class child. It just doesn't cost the parent, of which, more often than not, there's only one. This is the institution, after all, that's known to expend hundreds of dollars for a hammer, and thousands for a toilet seat. Experience shows that it costs government three times as much to do anything as it costs the private sector, at about one third the quality.

But "it takes a village," Horrible Hillary, the Woman With One Eyebrow informs us, "to raise a child." In this case the "village" consists of career case workers clawing their way to promotions and more money, public school teachers backed by rapacious unions, welfare workers, family court judges, bailiffs, jailers, parole officers, and other bureaucrats issuing welfare checks and authorizing somewhere between ten and twenty thousand "free" meals per child from cradle to prison.

And who pays for it all? The Productive Class, hard-working people who can't afford another child themselves, in which to instill the traditional values of private capitalism and self-reliance. Instead, because both parents have to work, they have little recourse but to send their children to state indoctrination centers where they are taught to despise their parents and become left wing parasitic losers, themselves.

Am I actually saying here that the Productive Class is being deliberately prevented—mostly by taxation—from having children, so the Parasitic Class can be subsidized to have them, instead? Just so there's no doubt, I'll say it again: the Productive Class is being prevented from having children, so the Parasitic Class can be paid to have them, instead. What it all means is that the Left is breeding voters.

As with most things, conservatives dimly make out the outlines of the trap in which they find themselves. But they're afraid to talk about it, let alone do anything about it. (An exception, Denver radio host Ken Hamblin, the self-styled "Black Avenger", was barbarically erased from the air waves by the city's neo-Marxist establishment.) First and foremost, conservatives fear being called "racists", even though the accusation has been grossly overused during the Obama Administration, and doesn't seem to carry the political lethality it once did. And there is, of course, the inconvenient datum that an overwhelming majority of individuals on the dole in this country are white.

Nor are conservatives capable of talking publicly about abolishing welfare once and for all. Being what they are, the precise opposite of innovators, lacking anything resembling sanity, integrity, courage, or intelligence, secretly dependent on libertarians for new ideas, they lack any creative means of communicating or accomplishing such a thing. Perhaps, by now, they're incapable of conceiving or visualizing it.

Besides—and perhaps this explains it all—conservatives and their accomplices receive plenty of welfare themselves; just consider Halliburton, or whatever Blackwater is calling itself these days. Or consider any "defense" contractor. And don't forget the rotten banks, financial institutions, incompetent automobile companies, and others that were "bailed out" to the tune of fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, or seventeen trillions (depending who you listen to) of increasingly worthless air-credit dollars when they should have simply been allowed to die a natural free market death, making way for newer enterprises with somebody at the top who possesses an I.Q. larger than his shoe size.

In the same connection, most people nowadays are too young to recall that food stamps are not a welfare program for the poor. They were devised by the government to subsidize farmers and support higher farm prices than the free market would otherwise bear. The first such program was the brain-child of a Roosevelt Vice President, socialist Henry Wallace, but the idea has grown like kudzu in Mississippi ever since. And no Republican administration since then has demonstrated the spine, guts, or cojones to end it, the right wing's usual thick-witted, cowardly excuse being that it would cause riots in the streets.

And so the left-leaning poor go on breeding, while the Productive Class goes on bleeding. All of which goes to show that the problem conservatives are always wailing about appears to be conservatism itself.

So here's another piece of advice, conservatives, which I'm well aware you have neither the intelligence nor the courage to follow. Forget about abortion; all that issue does is separate you from half the country's voters, and make enemies of your most effective allies—not to mention the source of whatever brain-power you do have, the libertarians.

Instead, try to pull up your socks, stand up, zip your trousers, and force the neo-Marxists to stop taxing future Productive Class children out of existence, long, long before abortion ever becomes an issue.

L. Neil Smith is the Publisher and Senior Columnist of L. Neil Smith's THE LIBERTARIAN ENTERPRISE, as well as the author of 33 freedom-oriented books, the most recent of which is DOWN WITH POWER: Libertarian Policy in a Time of Crisis:
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