Liberal politicians who favor big government typically justify their misguided worldview on the basis of equality, fairness, and social justice. They like to claim that government is more fair and just than the free market, although they are unable to provide any evidence to support their claim. Frankly, in most cases their real justification is more likely to be that letting voters become dependent on the government treasury has become the most dependable way to get elected or re-elected in America. Addicts are very loyal to their suppliers.
For the sake of argument, assume that big-government advocates are really committed to bringing about equality, fairness, and social justice through government coerced social engineering. Would this misguided sincerity on their part make taking from one person and giving to another irrespective of merit any less objectionable? Hardly. Equality that is based on taking from productive citizens and giving to the less productive is not equality at all. It is legalized theft, and the thief is the government. Rationalizing legalized theft on the basis of equality, fairness, and social justice is the big lie of liberals.
Government-coerced equality, fairness, and social justice are a lie because they: 1) are not a legitimate role of government, 2) are not an enumerated power in the Constitution, 3) do not work, 4) allow politicians and government bureaucrats to determine what is equitable, fair, and just, 5) encourage an unhealthy dependence on government, and 6) devastate the economic well being of society. In fact, big government is inherently unequal, unfair, and unjust. By undermining the economic freedom of its most productive citizens, big government also undermines the personal freedom of all Americans. Without personal freedom there can be no equality, fairness, or justice. Consequently, by seeking to establish an arbitrary state of equality, fairness, and justice in society, government is exceeding its Constitutional authority on one hand while ignoring a Constitutional mandate on the other. That mandate is to protect the freedom of all American citizens. Legalized theft protects the freedom of neither its victims nor its supposed beneficiaries.
It is absurd to avow that it is somehow equitable, fair, and just to take from a productive person and give to a less productive or unproductive person, to claim that one is helping the poor by hurting the rich, or to state that one is assisting the unemployed by undermining the competitiveness of employers who create jobs. Where is the equality, fairness, and social justice in these practices? The concept of being our brother’s keeper implies voluntarily helping each other. When a “have” gives to a “have-not” it should be in the form of charity or opportunity, not government coercion. How is it fair and just when a person who prospers by working long, hard, and smart has his assets forcibly taken by government and given to an able-bodied person who would rather milk the system than work?
Does all of this mean there should be no taxes? No. Government exists to carry out specific responsibilities as enumerated primarily in Article 1, Section 8 of the Constitution. These enumerated responsibilities are funded through taxation. The issue is one of maintaining a proper balance, and big-government programs provided in the name of equality, fairness, and social justice coupled with America’s growing entitlement mentality have tipped the scales in the wrong direction. As a result, the federal government has grown so far beyond Constitutional intent that if the founders could somehow return for a day they would not recognize their creation. In fact, they would probably think they had created a monster.