While on a walk recently, I couldn’t help but notice the mosquitoes buzzing about, wanting a piece of me. That is, a piece of my blood.
That brought to recollection something I heard on the radio the other day. It turns out that only female mosquitoes bite for blood. Why do they bite for blood? They are rearing young, and they need the extra energy. Now this isn’t an aggressive or inherently destructive motive. They (probably out of instinct) get blood (and really need blood) to rear their young.
Now, I have nothing against mosquitoes getting blood to rear their young per se. It’s when they start taking my blood (or someone else’s blood without their consent) that I have an issue: it’s my blood, after all. I think I have a right to it. I may choose to donate my blood to mosquitoes if I so choose (or so could anyone else), but it is not theirs for the taking, no matter how appropriate their reasons may be for doing so. It’s my blood.
Consider the analog to our current welfare-warfare state, with its myriad taxes, regulations, statutes, and infringements on liberty. The motives are often not directly destructive and aggressive: few statists would really have as their motive the control of an individual’s life, or the taking of his liberty. They have the high idea to help poor people, or keep the environment clean, or educate children, or stabilize the economy. The motives are fine. I have no problem with any of those things.
What I have a problem with is when the state approaches me, mosquito-like, and appropriates my wealth, my liberty, and my freedom without my consent. Just as I have no inherent objections to mosquitoes consuming blood, I have no inherent objections to money paying for an improved education, infrastructure, environment, or economy. But let us pay voluntarily.
What I object to is the mosquito-like way the state comes to me and you and sucks away our resources, without so much as a permission-slip. One wonders what the upper limit is on what the state can exact. How much is too much for the mosquitoes? Is there such a thing? For as long as there is someone with some money to spend, there is someone with some money to be “donated” (redistributed) to someone less well-off.
Is it a crime to help those less fortunate? Absolutely not. But let us do so voluntarily, rather than having our earnings exacted from us willy-nilly.
The statist will say that voluntary, liberty-based economic systems lead to problems that can only be corrected by government intervention and spending. A close and careful examination of economic history shows while free societies are not without their problems, it is the government interventions that make these problems far worse than they otherwise would be.
From the business cycle (and its myriad incarnations and implications) to welfare problems to education problems to monetary problems to terrorism problems, it is an arrogant attitude of state intervention that not only infringes on liberty, but complicates problems beyond what they would otherwise be in the absence of such state intervention.
It’s high time we see the state apparatus as more of a mosquito than as a redeeming power.