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Don't we both want what's best for the children?

(The genders assigned below could be reversed and the story would be the same...)

Man says to woman: The kid has got to move out on his own.  We can't keep taking care of him.

Woman says to man: But I don't want him to starve.  What if something happens to him?

Man: But we're going broke.

Woman: It's our responsibility to take care of him.

Man:  We won't be able to take care of him if we can't take care of ourselves!  He needs to find a job.

Woman:  You don't care about our son.  You don't want to take care of him.

Man:  It's basic economics.  Of course I love our son, but he needs to get out on his own and earn his own living.  We can still be there for him in a pinch...

Woman:  So he can move back if it doesn't work out?

Man: I was thinking more that we could send him a little money if times are tough...

(end of scene)

So, you tell me.  Which of these parents loves his/her son?  The answer is obvious. They both do.  The mother (in this case, remember it could be the father who is the "softy") simply wants to make sure the son gets all his needs met and lives a good life.  But the father (again, could be the mother) doesn't wish ill on the son, he simply sees an economic problem with the idea of providing all the money he will ever need to live.  Like most parents, though, he's wiling to send SOME money if times are tough.


And to me this is the functional equivalent of what we are seeing politically these days.  I bristle when I read that those who want to end the unemployment extensions must be heartless greedy corporate apologists.  But I disagree as well with those who assert that all liberals want the government to care for all its citizens just to make sure they are under the government yoke.  While either of these characterizations may apply in some cases, can't there be room for simple disagreement about what is best for the children (in this case citizenry)?

I happen to support the belief that we can't continue to spend money we don't have on supporting people who need money because this is a train wreck.  The broker we get the more folks will need money and the faster we will go broke.  But on the other hand, I don't assume everyone who believes that food stamps are a good way to make sure people don't starve is hell bent on sucking us all into a socialist dystopia.  

I grow tired of the shrill debate, mostly because I think it does nothing to promote reasonable debate about priorities and solutions.  Unless someone proves to me otherwise, I will assume we all want "what's best for the children" and simply have to wrap our heads around how we are going to provide for those who are suffering while ensuring our economy grows enough to help most everyone achieve enough prosperity that most of us can provide for ourselves.

We need to establish an efficient floor for support and stick to it.  And we need to establish a path to growth and stick to that as well.  I have ideas about these, which I hope to expand upon in future insta's.  

Thanks for reading.




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