[ExI] Charity vs. Entitlements

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Wed Apr 30 08:20:03 UTC 2008

2008/4/30  <ablainey at aol.com>:

> I am on the fence with this. As someone who has come from less than nothing
> to considerably more, I have been recipient of charity and
> given it to others. I have always had that dirty and indebted feeling on the
> few occasions when someone has bailed me out of a situation
> when I had neither the means or ability to help myself. because of this I
> have had a few periods of unemployment when I refused to take
> state handouts. Which perversely prevented me from receiving any practical
> help or other free 'entitlements' because I wasn't signing on.
> Despite that, I have always felt that you learn nothing and only loose self
> respect when you take charity.

But state handouts, such as they may be, are *not* charity, which was
the original point I was trying to make. They are more like the
handouts your insurance company gives you when your house burns down,
even though you have only paid premiums for a few months. The other
people people paying premiums agree to help you out in case of bad
luck provided that you agree to do the same for them. It's the same
sort of agreement when you live in a state that taxes citizens to
provide benefits for other citizens. If you don't like paying the
taxes you are free to move elsewhere, or to abstain from the sort of
activities that require the payment of taxes. The world is full of
independent entities constantly adjusting their level of taxation and
government-provided services in order to compete with each other.

Stathis Papaioannou

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