The Strength of the State
The state needs to be strong enough to resist the will and the temptation to follow the will of any and all private or individual interests that are different from that of the common good. This does not mean that government ought to necessarily take on more resources than it needs to effectively function on a day to day basis. Quite honestly, I think that it is better if the lion’s share of wealth is shared out amongst all workers who contribute to the economy, regardless as to how high or low their job’s social status may be considered and judged by society. However, it does mean that government needs to do what is simply right for everybody’s sake, and to be exclusive to nobody’s interests and desires that runs counter to the actual and empirically based public good.
This is what’s in the government’s interests relative to the whole rest of the citizenry. We respect the government that does what’s right for all of its citizens and we preserve those governments and institutions. We reject those who don’t, and who simply consume resources while being ineffectual at dealing with the issues, problems and plights that are common to us all in an effective, reliable and honest matter, however insignificant their consumption may be. We tend to value an, albeit, more expensive and functional government over an excessively cheap and ineffectual one, when we’re asked point blank which one we’d prefer, conservatives and liberals alike. The proof of this is the popularity of Franklin Roosevelt and the Congresses we preserved throughout the 20th century, while we’re seeing the legacy of Ronald Reagan and the Republican ideology collapse in the late 20th and early 21st century.
Americans respect the government that is independent of private interest and subservient to the general interest, at the very least. That is how you have effective government anywhere and in any form. It doesn’t matter how that government is organized, provided that it does the same basic job within the context of the given social unit. People may have different preferences based on ideological biases and cultural differences. But the key point that is common to all is that government needs to serve the public and not solely the private interests of public and private elite. By this standard, we can shape a more accurate picture of common reality and be able to judge which aspects of the system work and which are only apart of ideologically motivated fantasy. The consequences of government can all be measured and observed intuitively within the society, even if it cannot be as precisely measured or quantified as the natural laws of physics. The relative rigidity of the laws and rules of the system remain, even if numbers do not play a role that we’re presently familiar with. Failure to adhere to them well generally results in the failure of the system and produces the need to start a new system in which humanity may or many not be included.
The choice may be up to us. But I doubt that our brains or fate will actually allow us a real choice in the matter.
Think about it.
We neither really like nor remember the times when our government wasn’t present, contrary to what the Libertarians would say. A society needs a governing body, albeit in a different way than has previously been defined. A government and its members need to actually be humble to the needs of the public and work explicitly for those needs on their own terms. Society won’t take the imposition of artificial rules and laws, and it certainly won’t support small-selfish piggyness for terribly long.
Think about it.