Thursday, January 24, 2013

On Bloomberg's ever-expanding Nanny-State


There can be no personal or individual right when the individual is a number subject to the greater good.

Excerpted, TheCollegeConservative, "Bloomberg’s Ever Expanding Nanny State":
The only redeeming quality of the nanny state is that it purports itself to care for the poor. But what if it did not have that mind? What if, in some hellish utilitarian scheme, it required the poor to suffer for the greater good? To New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, such a scheme seems to be the solution. In an effort to limit prescription drug addiction, Mayor Bloomberg has limited the number of painkillers that local hospitals can prescribe. Under the new law, patients can only obtain three days worth of painkillers, and some of the more powerful painkillers will be banned altogether.

The poor should thank the benevolence of Mayor Bloomberg. Thanks to his ban on large sodas, they no longer have to worry about their weight. And now, thanks to his painkiller measure, they no longer have to worry about addiction. Of course, a few of them, the poor, may suffer on occasion, but they can take great comfort in the fact that they are suffering for the greater good. For the health of the city. For the state…

The problem with the utilitarian approaches to government, aside from the obvious fact that they necessarily devolve into materialism, is that they strip any notion of personal right. There can be no personal or individual right when the individual is a number subject to the greater good.

When people are reduced from a moral equality, to a numerical equality, then it shouldn’t be surprising when our leaders solve problems by saying, “A few poor people will suffer. So what?”

However, if people have a moral equality, then central planning becomes a lot more difficult. If people have a moral equality, then it no longer possible to pass sweeping reforms that will apply to all regardless of personal situation. The moral equality requires you to recognize that men are different. Yes, this equality will recognize difference. Because it is only through such differences that you can make moral decisions based on a personal level, and not at a national numerical level. There is no difference in numerical equality, and therefore no reason why some should arbitrarily be chosen to suffer instead of others. It is a bastardization of the ideal of civil society and the common good to suggest that a class of people should suffer because it is the most efficient solution.
Brian Miller is a student at George Mason Univ. in VA. Read the full piece at the link above.


John Morris said...

The funny thing about New York is that to a huge degree it functions only because of a vast informal economy.

Illegal dollar vans and gypsie cabs fill huge transportation gaps. Immigrant busineeses run on dynamic low cost labor. Most semi affordable housing comes from illegal subletting or the reuse of industrial buildings. Street vendors and foodtrucks fill supply and demand gaps- like overflow lunch crowds in business districts.

I propose a day in which every person in NYC attempts to obey every insane rule on the books. the city would come to a stop.

The Right Guy said...

Bloomberg should be tarred and feathered for what he's done to the city. He's been a horrible mayor for the city. The only mayor worse was Dinkins.

Eric Dondero said...

Yeah Jim, but if you ask a Ron Paulist they'd say Giuliani was the worst mayor of all time.

The Right Guy said...

I don't think there's many ron paulist's in or from NY.

John Morris said...

Sadly one has to grade NY politicians on a curve.

I some ways Bloomberg has been pretty great and done things Rudy should have.

For example, he has changed the zoning laws to allow much more dense mixed use development along the major transit lines. He also has attempted to expand the base taxis.

One has to realise the pretty toxic political situation in NYC.

John Morris said...

@The Right Guy

Sorry, but NYC has had a really long list of very bad mayors. Dinkins is one, but the kind of damage done by people like John Lindsay is beyond calculation.

The Right Guy said...

Sorry John:

I lived in NY for 40 years and worked for NYC as a child abuse investigator when Dinkins was mayor. It was like someone let the baboons free at the zoo. Anyone that was black that worked for the city acted like they had carte blanche to do nothing or whatever they wanted. Then there was the debauchery. One day I went to take a piss in the employees bathroom and someone had jerked off in a urinal. These were the people I worked with. At least bloomberg has some standards, even if he is a nanny state scumbag.

As far as Rudy goes, he was a mixed bag. Crime went down big time and he restored pride in the greatest city in the world. The flipside is he's a somewhat narcissistic autocrat that surrounds himself with yes men. He doesn't like dissension or disagreement: He's always right. Rudy did get stuff done, but I knew he would fail at running for president because he's out of his element outside of NY and wouldn't take advice on how to connect with people that weren't NYers as he knew better. Well, he got to spend more time with his good friend judith nathan. That said, hell always be New York's mayor. Bloomie and the rest, not so much.

John Morris said...

I put Dinkins on the worst list, however he was a 1 term mayor. He did not create the total bankruptcy of the city and destroy the city's structure in the way Wagner, Lindsay did.

The fact that it wasn't until the 1990's that murders dropped below 2000 a year tells you there's lots of blame to go around.

The Right Guy said...

The last year of Dinkin's term, the murders totaled over 2500. The reason Dinkins got one term is that he sucked. Wagner? Lindsey? Ancient history now. Dinkins will be soon too.

John Morris said...

I will add one name to the list.

He wasn't a mayor or governor but you can't talk NYC history without talking about Robert Moses. The city barely survived what he did and both the state and city have never confronted the off budget power of state "authorities".

The shock and displacement caused to so many neighborhoods has never been fixed.

John Morris said...


It's not ancient history. The massive isolated housing projects from that era are still around. So is so much of the corrupt union control. Rent Control is still there.

The Grand Concourse and so much of middle class NY is gone.

Again- If, wanna say Dinkins was the worst mayor, I'm OK with that. Bloomberg as much I hate him is not in that league.

The Right Guy said...

Bad ideas almost never get fixed, instead we call it reform, which is just tossing the dice in a can, shaking and see what comes out. It's the same shit. Yeah, RM was a real piece of work, but he was a product of the FDR era. Bloomberg is a rich idiot. He has money and some may say he earned it, but he's such a control freak that it's more important for him to control than admitting some real salient facts to himself. I can only imagine the kind of asshole he is to work with or for.

So, instead of living in ancient history, how can we stop the assholes from making it worse?

Answer is, we can't. NYC is so disproportionately progressive that these are the results they want. If it weren't true, it wouldn't keep happening. My advice is move west where you are allowed to make your own mistakes and be free to reap the rewards or not.

Rita said...

That Miller guy is a cutie!!!

John Morris said...

Rita that was so sexist, I actually feel violated.

Eric Dondero said...

Rita, sexy girls and guys go to the top of the queue here at LR. We're pro-sex here.

John Morris said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
John Morris said...

By the time Dinkins was kicked out of office, NYC was a majority, minority city, meaning that large numbers of hispanics, asians and even blacks voted him out.

This is where I disagree strongly with some of the spin on this blog.(Indian Bed Bug post) I think there are very large numbers of potential conservatives and Libertarians among urban ethnic communities.

The Weiner seat was won with a coalition of Russian immigrant & white working class voters.

Walk through places like Jackson Heights, Corona in Queens and you see a pretty huge dynamic informal economy. You see lots, and lots of people who want to work and do work very hard. What's needed is a grass roots movement that shows that group all the ways the city is hurting their ability to get ahead.

I also lived in NYC, about 40 years- most of my life. I really do love it on lots of levels.

The Right Guy said...

Yeah, there's a lot of informal economies going on, like genovese, columbo, gambino...

John Morris said...

@ The Right Guy said,

"NYC is so disproportionately progressive that these are the results they want. If it weren't true, it wouldn't keep happening."

I agree with that- which is why I sadly grade Bloomberg on a curve. As bad as he is, most of the likely current alternatives are worse.

The question is why NY is in that situation in spite of the very bad record of damage leftists have done in the city.

He who fails to learn from history is doomed to repeat it. The GOP, and libertarians have failed to get in there and show the damage statists have done. FDR, Robert Moses, John Lindsay are not not "ancient history" until all of their policies have been exposed and removed.

This is the same on the national level. We have Obama today, because the GOP was to cowardly to say FDR, LBJ and pals were evil scumbags and fight to tell the real history.

John Morris said...


NY Dollar Van

NY Food Truck

NY Street Vendor

NY Sublet

John Morris said...

There are two ways to go.

1) Is to fight to change some political attitudes and build grass roots pro liberty coalitions in urban areas--at least enough to cut voting margins & have people in place to spot and contest vote fraud.

2) Is to decide, these areas are too far gone (some are) and split the country in 2 or more parts- and remove the cancer from the patient that way.

But except for Wyoming and a few other states- the culture of statism, hand outs and crony capitalism also is very alive in the west. Sooner or later, you have to fight the intellectual battle over history or the same cancer will spread there.

The Right Guy said...

I don't have to google shit.