Here’s a simple fact – a truism really – one might keep in mind when thinking about things a government may do for or give to one.

Anything of outright personal benefit one might get will have been paid for by money collected from either:

  • one’s neighbours (in the form of taxes)
  • one’s own savings (in the form of inflation)
  • one’s generation’s children (in the form of debt they will have to repay)

And since governments are notoriously inefficient redistributors, all that collected amount will be greater than the amounts paid out.

The implications are immediate.

  • The average person pays more into the various governments than he ever gets back.
  • Any industrial bailout is paid for by the healthier industries.
  • Any funding of one’s local concerns by a higher level of government is paid for by more taken from other localities.

Some people have no problem with this fundamentally Marxist morality (“from each according to ability (to pay) – to each according to need”), some others just refuse to recognize it as such. I find it barely tolerable.