Freedom, dependency and self-government

Aretae responded to my posts on freedom and dependency a while back. I think I understand where he’s coming from, but I’d like to try a different tactic.

If we’re talking about distinct but related concepts (freedom and dependency), I’d like to add another one to the mix: self-government.

I’m speaking broadly about the ability of a person to participate in the governing of himself.

Modern progressives (i.e. us) associate self-government with freedom. We think of the history of the 20th Century as one in which freedom was expanded, and by freedom being expanded we largely mean people being able to vote for their choice of mediocre symbolic head of state (heh – just making sure that you’re paying attention). This is called "progress." And you’d better like it.

I believe that a person cannot legitimately participate in the governing of himself if he is dependent. Such a person becomes a pawn – his opinions are controlled by potential sources of support, for which he longs.

The fundamental problem with modern government therefore becomes obvious: we have a lot of people participating who appear to be participating in their own government but who are incapable of actually doing so.

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4 Responses to Freedom, dependency and self-government

  1. retiredguy says:

    What is dependence? Where is the line between is and isn’t? And who decides? One could be mighty dependent on that decider of whether you is or you isn’t — and power is shifted to the clerk and witheld from the individual…
    Is there a property value level that determines not-dependent? I’d suggest a voting age of 28 for starters.

  2. Abelard Lindsey says:

    Of course, dependency and self-government are mutually exclusive. Dependency is anathema to freedom. This is so frigging obvious to me that it is a tautology.

    Yet, there are certain kinds of conservatives who actually praise dependency as a positive social value. This is totally irrational and counterproductive and simply ensures that any conservative movement remain a non-starter.

  3. […] Foseti – “DC’s Changing Demography“, “We All Talk Progressive“, “Freedom, Dependency and Self-Government” […]

  4. What universe have I entered where progressives are the champions of independence and self-rule, and conservatives try to make people more dependent? That’s the opposite of reality. Was this post an April fool’s joke?

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