On being a ‘bad sport’

(Concluding my column of yesterday, Nov. 8.)

One particularly brilliant legal mind writes in, in response to a recent column:

“List of lies in this column: … Illegal immigrants are barred from receiving federal welfare benefits, and even legal immigrants cannot receive those benefits for the first five years after they immigrate. See title IV of the Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 and subsequent amendments.”

Wrong, Fan of Big Government. Hundreds of thousands — probably millions — of illegal immigrant children attend “public schools” in the United States, at no direct cost to the children or their parents. These institutions are funded with tax dollars, INCLUDING vast sums of FEDERAL tax dollars. Not only are the so-called “public schools” (they’re really socialist youth propaganda camps, where little “education” beyond sixth grade level ever occurs) classic redistributive welfare programs, even serving free MEALS to “the poor,” they are likely our LARGEST source of redistributive “welfare benefits.” And local school officials in cities including Las Vegas WON’T EVEN ATTEMPT, as a matter of policy, to determine the number of illegal inmates they succor. Though they certainly know — from the number of kids in largely useless “bilingual” and “English Language Learning” classes — that’s it’s more than 25 percent of the student body in many Southwestern cities.

And we haven’t even gotten STARTED on the cost to taxpayers of de facto “free” care for illegals in the emergency rooms and maternity wards of our public hospitals, running into the billions of dollars in the states of Arizona and Nevada alone. To merely state this “threatens hospitals with bankruptcy” doesn’t quite capture the extent of the hemorrhage. They WOULD be bankrupt if citizen taxpayers weren’t considered a bottomless well of funds to prop them up. How on earth is this “not tax-funded welfare” — with no “five-year waiting period,” bub — especially when hospital administrators in fear of lawsuits (what if that tummyache turns out to be appendicitis?) interpret a federal law barring them from turning away anyone in need of EMERGENCY care, as a mandate to allow their ERs to clog with illegal aliens seeking ANY kind of care, at all?

And what about Socialist-Elect Obama’s aunt, Zeituni Onyango, 56, referred to as “Aunti Zeituni” in Obama’s memoir, currently living in public housing in Boston, as revealed by The AP rather late in the race — long after they’d done their massive exposes on Sarah Palin’s wardrobe costs and her daughter’s oh-so-relevant pregnancy, long after half of Americans had already cast their early ballots — on Nov. 1?

How did that happen? Is our brave anonymous correspondent saying public housing isn’t “a welfare program,” and federally subsidized to boot? I thought illegal immigrants were “barred”!

My fellow Libertarians say we should open the borders “and then we can get rid of all these freebies.” How about we do it the other way around?


Finally, one “FastTracker” also wrote in on Nov. 2:

“Hey Vin: Thanks. You’ve inspired a brilliant idea, if I do say so myself. Why not just do away with these pesky and costly elections, and let the beauty pagents (sic) determine those to be our politicians? …”

To which I replied: Funny, isn’t that what Americans just did, on November 4th?

# # #

Sen. John McCain was gracious in defeat Tuesday night, urging his fellow Americans to now unite in their support of his fellow senator, Barack Obama, chosen by the voters to be “the next president of the country we both love.”

In these gracious remarks, Sen. McCain made clear why he lost the election. One is tempted to say “why he and his party” lost the election. But unfortunately, his concession remarks also revealed what some pundits have been saying for months: John McCain has no party.

So far as Sen. McCain is concerned, he was pleased to submit his resume in application for The Big Job. He received a fair series of interviews; the election went to the better orator with the better turn-out-the-vote organization, and thus he could in good conscience shake hands when the job went to someone else: Better luck next time, old fellow.

Sen. McCain did not merely “do a poor job” articulating the philosophy of expansive liberty and limited government. He failed to articulate it at all, because he is not an adherent of this philosophy, and could thus play no role in calling forth the forces of freedom to do battle on behalf of this philosophy, as articulated down through the centuries by by Jefferson, Bastiat, Nock, von Mises, Hayek, R.A. Taft, Rand, Goldwater, Ron Paul, et al.

Those who suffered a year’s worth of frustration waiting for John McCain to sound that rallying cry — which he never did, in any believable manner — are now criticized for acting “bitter” about the Nov. 4 results. We are expected to act like the losing team after a sporting contest, lining up to shake hands with the victors.

The problem is, socialism is not a game played on a 60-minute clock within the white “out-of-bounds” markers, where you’re free to come back and try again, with the scoreboard set back to zero-zero, next season.

In the 20th century, socialism — which comes in many forms, but always involves the use of armed force or the threat of force to seize the wealth from the productive class and redistribute it to the less less creative, the less innovative, the less industrious — murdered millions, and impoverished hundreds of millions more. The socialists never enter the next round with the scoreboard “reset to zero” — they consolidate the gains of 1912 and 1932 and 1964 and 2008, digest their new powers and all the wealth they’ve seized from their victims, and then — swollen with all they have seized — ask “Play again?”

For nearly 100 years, our battles have all been holding actions and “fighting retreats” before the expanding forces of government tyranny. But we’re supposed to smile, fund the opposition with our confiscated earnings, and be good sports about it.

Since they can tantalize the ill-schooled masses with promises of “free stuff, seized from the greedy rich,” the socialists nearly always defeat us. Even during our temporary “victories” — the Reagan years, for instance — the rhetoric may swing our way, but the power and grasp and size of the state continue to grow. Yet that is not enough for them. Oh no. They proceed to get quite irate if we fail to shake hands and join with them in celebrating their latest victory against the outnumbered forces of freedom!

We’re not being “good sports” about it!

Socialists are thieves. They are worse than thieves, because they assume a pose of high moral dudgeon if we call them what they are, proceeding to claim the authorization of “majority support” for their crimes. They are in fact slavers, insisting we not only pay up, but do so with a smile and a happy little minstrel song.

They ridicule us, saying, ‘What do you mean, ‘socialism’? We already have Social Security and Medicare and Medicaid. Are you calling those wonderful programs ‘socialism’?”

Of course I am. And the government schools — the youth propaganda camps where new little legions of socialists are bred — those are socialist programs, as well.

With Jefferson, we have pledged eternal enmity to these ongoing crimes against human energy, ingenuity, and decency. This is not “a game.” With these forces of darkness, which will eventually ruin this once-proud nation, casting us broken and bankrupt on the mercy of the enemies of freedom, we do not shake hands.

We nearly always lose. But while we breathe, we fight.

3 Comments to “On being a ‘bad sport’”

  1. Anthony Says:


    Being this America, you have a right to your opinion and I’ll defend to anyone your right to express it. Having said that, I find great turmoil and pain in your comments. It appears that your philosophy is “I’ve made it, gotten mine, your get yours”. As an economist and supporter of free markets, there is often one thing about those free markets that most folks forget to discuss: freedom isn’t free and neither are free markets. Markets have winners and losers and that’s their nature. But those winnings and loses create disparities that are only alleviated if Reagan’s trickle down really trickles.

    When economics became a field of study, the difference between philosophers and economists was a belief in the private ownership of land, labor and capital. Until this time, this practice was thought to be one of heresy. There was a ruling class and your occupation was dependent largely on that of your family’s. No chance of growth, of change. Private markets began as a response to the ruling class’, the winners, tendency to hoard resources at the top and the working/lower class’, the losers, tendency to remain working/lower class. Greed is just as human an emotion as is anger and happiness. Not greed in the sense that there was or is some intentional desire to knowingly have more mansions at the expense of someone having food to eat. But, the subtle sense of security with having wealth and the insecurity one might feel when giving even small portions of it away.

    It is this tendency toward self-preservation that is and always will be with us and drives us to these great swings in our national economy. Tax breaks to the ruling class, massive upward shifts of wealth, never has and never will bring the massive investments in America that Reaganomics promised. It doesn’t trickle down. Rising prices and stagnate wages are a testimony to this fact.

    Given that, the reality is the wealthy and the economy are worse off than if more people prospered. Why? Because if you think prosperity has a price tag, try poverty. If you think education is expensive, run the numbers on ignorance. Prisons, the welfare state, homelessness, etc., we can create a long list. The point is, the early economists recognized that a truly free market economy performed best when all citizens participated. The theory of acting in one’s own self-interest only works when sufficient numbers of people are acting.

    By your definition, the early economists were socialists as well. Most scholars would agree that the Soviet Union, North Korea and others who practice the politics of oppression are bastardizing socialism just as bin Laden bastardizes Islam. One or two bad apples spoils the whole bunch. Do you really want members of the “Greatest Generation” who fought back the Nazi’s in WWII to be relegated to “market-driven” healthcare, a system they couldn’t afford and would undoubtedly suffer in.

    It’s your opinion and you have a right to it. Just know, that doesn’t make it or mine the right one. The real answer is probably somewhere in the middle. Which is exactly where President-Elect Obama stands. I don’t want to support some lazy scoundrel who refuses to carry his own weight and I doubt you want to take food from mouths of homeless children. How about we start there as a nation. Because if it’s one thing that the early economists understood, when the market has all citizens participating, there are no winners and losers, just different degrees of success.



  2. Michael Stahl Says:

    Thanks Vin for this piece. I am an ER Dr. in Colorado. Somewhere on the order of 60-75% of my patients are illegals or their children. They know every scam there is to get free medical care. Just a few minutes ago I saw a 3 year old who unfortunately developed leukemia a month ago. His obviously illegal parents got him on Medicaid within a week! His care alone is likely to cost on the order of a million dollars, or more if he requires a stem cell transplant. It is unbelievable! People have no idea.

  3. Dave Says:

    Setter letter to RJ Sunday PM referencing you on socialism. Tried to cc you but no luck. Saved copy, can foward if have email address.