Monday, January 7, 2013

Words with bother me.

I've already said how I feel about 'exposure'.

Here's another word that keeps bothering me: 'Entitlement'.

This is a word fiscal conservatives (I consider myself a moderate fiscal conservative, but compared to some people...) have been pushing into the mainstream to call any kind of welfare. By calling it an 'entitlement', they turn it into something negative, something we shouldn't be expecting, asking for, or giving people.

With over 10% unemployment in some places, we need to help people. Voluntary charity can't do it when the middle class are afraid to give up their own money in case they need it tomorrow...and is there anyone, right now, who actually feels they have financial security?

This made me think about 'double speak'. (If you haven't read 1984, you probably should). By changing 'welfare' to 'entitlement' we change immediate perceptions.

As we transition to new economic systems, we need mechanisms to prevent people from starving during these difficult times. No civilized country lets their poor go naked, hungry, or die from completely preventable diseases. No civilized country should have 'working homeless', either. But moving to new systems, held back as it is by the American fear of anything resembling 'socialism', is going to take a long time indeed.