The Right’s Unnecessary Civil War

Source: EconLog
by Richard Fulmer

“There is an ongoing battle today between conservatives who want to use government’s power to enforce morality and libertarians. The former believe that the nation’s moral decay is a product of classical liberal policies that allowed or even encouraged immorality. It is not. It is a product of a half century of expanding government policies dedicated to ameliorating pain. My father-in-law worked with patients suffering from Hansen’s Disease – leprosy. One of the terrible symptoms of the disease is that people lose their sense of feeling. We tend to think of pain as an enemy, but, as my father-in-law observed, pain is ‘the best friend no one wants.’ … Government can create a sort of moral leprosy by weakening or even destroying the feedback loops that make it possible for people to know when their actions are destructive or self-destructive.” (01/14/23)