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You may have found yourself confronted with the idea that “America” is illegitimate because really it was a bunch of landed, rich, elite, white dudes trying to craft a regime to protect their own property and interests. Now, that may be a good argument insofar as it goes toward identifying the political legitimacy of the world we live in. And there is much to be said about protecting majorities from the tyranny of minorities (read Madison on this). 

However, this argument does sort of beg the question, and the issue comes up more prominently in discussions of the 1% today. And it is this: what’s wrong with anyone trying to protect their property and livelihoods? Is it only respectable when someone with less than $100k of lifetime wealth and assets tries to do stuff to protect themselves? At what point does the bank account grow too large to be legitimately worthy of wanting to protect? Please do tell. And remember, is there any more reason to believe that the man with $1 million in the “bank” has ill-gotten gains more than the man with “1,000 in the “bank? I suspect a stronger case can be made for the opposite.

We’ve truly gone down the tubes if we continue to allow this rhetoric to remain unchallenged. Aren’t ALL “men” created equal? Don’t we all have equal rights to life and property? That doesn’t mean we have equal life and property, only that we can protect what is ours without privilege. Please do enlighten me. 

One Response to “Weekend Thought: Share it and You, Too, Shall Be Removed from Polite Company”

  1. Harry says:

    Well, that is the argument in the salon, and the new idea for the next election. This is the noise you would hear if you were to go to those faculty dinner parties.

    I get sick of the argument about how we should put our political differences aside, and reach consensus over the inevitable victory of socialism over the capitalist swine.

    A million bucks is not nearly what it was forty years ago, and ten years from now it may be half or less satisfying. However, forty years ago many of us figured that we had better work hard and save and not count on the government giving us a French pension. This is not just me, but many people I know, people of modest means.

    These people have a million bucks and perhaps more. They saved, they invested; they put their children through college, they did without when necessary.

    So, the faculty think these people should cough up their money because America was founded illegitimately? That is the Elizabeth Warren theorem, boiled down. You are not the misanthrope, WC.

    I always thought it was my job to prosper, to take care of my family first, then my neighbor , and to give to the Pat Toomey senatorial campaign, the church, Perkiomen School, etc.

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