Welfare: The Politics of Welfare is "about validating oneself rather than helping others"



Excellent article in the October 2014 Imprimis by Hillsdale College

I conclude that the machinery created by the politics of kindness doesn’t work very well—in the sense of being economical, adaptable, and above all effective—because the liberals who build, operate, defend, and seek to expand this machine don’t really care whether it works very well and are, on balance, happier when it fails than when it succeeds...

This is why so many government programs initiated to conquer a problem end up, instead, colonizing it by building sprawling settlements where the helpers and the helped are endlessly, increasingly co-dependent...

This assessment also provides an answer to the question of why liberals always want a bigger welfare state. It’s because the politics of kindness is about validating oneself rather than helping others, which means the proper response to suffering is always, “We need to do more,” and never, “We need to do what we’re already doing better and smarter.” That is, liberals react to an objective reality in a distinctively perverse way. [emphasis added]

References:

"The Case Against Liberal Compassion" William Voegeli, Senior Editor, Claremont Review of Books, Imprimis October 2014, Hillsdale College