Those are Rand Paul’s words from CPAC, and as much as a like what I see in Rand Paul, that phraseology really bugs me. That’s like saying we must pay attention to the weather AND the temperature, humidity, pressure, precipitation, cloud cover and wind as though the term “weather” doesn’t already take those other things into account.
As a business owner, that attempt to separate the economic from the personal has never made any sense at all.
In fact, it is impossible to separate the economic from the personal. Name any “personal” subject or issue and tell me it has no economic implications whatsoever. Name any economic subject or issue and then tell me it has nothing whatsoever to do with personal choice.
Tax me, limit my business activities, my investments, get between me and my bank, and you are directly attacking my personal choices. Try to tell me who I must or must not associate with, how I must interact with others, or what I can do with my body, and that is a direct attack on my economic liberty. One equals the other. There is no moral or logical separation between them.
Yes yes, I know that we’re supposed to separate the personal from the economic, as though they’re different, for political reasons, but that’s a ruse. A trick. I will not step over the line into Crazyland just to make someone else’s politics easier, or to assuage their guilt. No, Young Grasshopper; there is just the one word that matters, the one that encompasses everything, and you’re either for it or against it – liberty.
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You’re right about the facts and how obvious they are to anyone who owns a business. I don’t mind that Rand is using the redundant terms, however. The intersection of economics with ALL aspects of life is not obvious to the majority of Americans. Most citizens are employees (as opposed to entrepreneurs) and are woefully ignorant of basic economics. To an employee who never stayed awake through an economics class, money is something that a faceless corporation gives to you in return for showing up and working. Most people don’t see any direct connection between their job performance and their pay. They also seldom have to write checks to the IRS or deal with any of the regulatory burden on their employers.
Sometimes, it looks like the real cultural divide in America is between employees (whether they are tenured University professors or burger-flippers) and entrepreneurs (whether they are plumbers or Fortune 500 CEO’s).
You’re making reference to what Limbaugh calls the “low information voter” but we could broaden it to “low information citizen”. People don’t know, it isn’t taught, and that’s the way some people prefer it. It makes for a more compliant society. Authoritarians need you to need them. If too many people are aware, the authoritarians are left out in the cold with nothing but their un-satiated power-lust, their dysfunction, and their anger.