A big government is a necessary evil
Debate Rounds (3)
SloppyJoe6412 forfeited this round.
gtvaero forfeited this round.
Let's talk animals. (Yes, I know we humans are animals too, I mean other animals). They base their social life in a combination of force and cooperation. Some species are more cooperative, some are more brutal, but most use a mix of it, depending on the situation. For example, wolves cooperate in hunting and puppy raising, but define their ranks by force, sometimes killing each other. To some extent the same is applicable to ants, apes and any social species.
Now let's get to humans. We also have the ability to cooperate and dominate others by force. However, we have developed more advanced and effective methods for both. For example, wolves can only cooperate within their pack, formed by one or two dozen individuals: we humans have developed much wider forms, and one of them is the government itself. It is a large organization in which essentially all members of a certain country play a part, but some -officials, employees, contractors, etc.- are more significant. The government is a large social machine which extends cooperation: when you pay taxes you are cooperating with all of your countrymen (wilingly or not, that's a different issue, but I will get to that later).
Unfortunately, we have also extended the reach of domination. Going back to our friends the wolves, the leader of the pack dominates the pack itself, again a dozen or two individuals, based mostly on force and to some extent on brains. But humans can go much further than that. The CEO of a major corporation may be feeble, overweight and elderly, but his power extends over millions of people,. by means of a vast network of subordinates. Along the same lines, a military commander exerts power over others not by his own muscle, but by the authority he represents: one decision by him can mean death for thousands of others -with or without a reason.
So it's time to weigh one against the other. What happens when you let the power of inviduals go without or with minimal control, which is the point of those who propose a small government? We have seen it, and it's not good. Slavery was introduced by such strong willed individuals -the wolves among us, even if they are paunchy and bald. Weaker people was forced to work for them, receiving the very minimum necessary to survive and keep working. What is true in the internal workings of a nation is also true in the international arena. Other nations are invaded usually in the name of self defense, but that is rarely ever true -usually it's the invaded who defend from the invaders, often to no avail. In other words, the power of powerful humans extends far beyond that of any other animal, and in most cases it's used with the same lack of sympathy for the weak.
But humans have developed an antidote, and it's called Government. A robber baron might want to enslaven a whole town, but a small bureaucrat has the power to stop him in the name of the Law. A plantation owner may think he's too big to pay taxes, but an obscure tax officer will make him pay (I know what you're thinking, please keep on reading). A lieutenant general may think the colored peoples in his own nation or overseas are subhumans and do not deserve to live, but his own civilian superiors have the power to stop him from using his deadly array of weaponry. And all this is what the government does.
But do they do it "right"? Are our taxes always properly used instead of diverted to somebody's pockets? Are judges always on the people side, or do they often yield to the one with the deepest pockets? Do the uber rich pay their taxes in full, or do they find a million loopholes with the complicity of those who are supposed to collect them? Are the military consistenly aligned with the interest of the majority, or do they often act as warlords for the powerful?
I think most of us would agree in the answer: Governments (all of them, please do not make this a local US Republican vs. Democrat issue which is not) are always corrupt, inefficient and cumbersome. There are lots of useless employees who live off the people, and could not care less if we live or die.
But my point is, this is less bad than the other outcome. Reduce the size of the government, and the door will open for the wolves among us to abuse their power even more. That's why I mean by necessary evil -an evil that's much better than the alternative.
gtvaero forfeited this round.
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