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Tag Archives: Social security and welfare


Rise of the Robots: A Bad Argument for a Bigger Welfare State

By Jay W. Richards • National Review

A group of scientists and activists wrote the president to warn him of an automated future that will give rise to “a separate nation of the poor, the unskilled, the jobless.” To blunt the coming mass unemployment, they proposed a universal basic income.

The group, called the Ad Hoc Committee on the Triple Revolution, wrote that letter in March 1964, to President Lyndon Johnson. Their prophecy was way off, but it had its desired effect. Johnson promptly launched his “War on Poverty,” which jumpstarted the growth of federal, means-tested welfare programs.

We now have 80 such programs. Instead of ridding the country of poverty, these programs create cycles of dependency and despair.

Alas, we haven’t learned the lesson. The old argument is new again, now that robots, automation, and artificial intelligence seem poised to upend our economy. Officially smart people are Continue reading


[Flashback Interview] The Iron Lady on Individual Self-Reliance (“There is no such thing as society.”)

“All too often the ills of this country are passed off as those of society. Similarly, when action is required, society is called upon to act. But society as such does not exist except as a concept. Society is made up of people. It is people who have duties and beliefs and resolve. It is people who get things done. She prefers to think in terms of the acts of individuals and families as the real sinews of society rather than of society as an abstract concept. Her approach to society reflects her fundamental belief in personal responsibility and choice. To leave things to ‘society’ is to run away from the real decisions, practical responsibility and effective action.”

Margaret_Thatcherby Scott L. Vanatter

Four score and seven years ago Margaret Thatcher was born in Grantham, Lincolnshire County. Today she belongs to the ages.

Of course, she always has belonged to the ages — at least since her principled leadership helped bring Britain back from the brink of a crippling socialist ruin. For good reason a Soviet journalist labeled her the Iron Lady. With Ronald Reagan she led the free world in the face of a once fearful Soviet Union.

Below are excerpts of an interview she gave as Prime Minister at No. 10 Downing Street, on September, 23, 1987. It was immediately controversial because she made the case that there was “no such thing as Society.” Continue reading


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