Go Ahead, Give Up, Quit

Take the welfare check, take the handouts from the government and buy your cheeseburgers, watch your TV and grow fat and ineffectual.

Please do.

I want you to quit.

Because if you don’t work, then those who do will be all the more valuable. We will be the only ones left to support everyone else.

You will then need us. Oh, how you will need us!

Before long, we will be the chosen ones. We will be the most valued because, without us, all the rest of you would eventually starve, freeze or die of some mundane illness.

What’s that? Medical care will be free?

Why, yes, I believe that’s true. That is, until the doctors and nurses decide they’re unwilling to work for what the government can afford to pay them.

Pay them more?

Sure. Just print more money. Increase their salary from, oh let’s use round numbers, from one million dollars a year to … heck, let’s give them five million dollars a year. And when they go to MacDonalds, let’s charge them more – they can afford it – to keep that money in circulation.

And guess what? That Big Mac that was five bucks will soon be fifty.

That’s inflation. When you print more money than there is value in the market, the money becomes devalued. Supply and demand adjust the buying power of the currency so it matches the value of the services and goods it represents. That’s basic economics.

And if you try to legislate the cost of goods, then all you do is energize the black market to find or develop a different currency, sometimes in goods, sometimes in services, sometimes in a foreign currency to replace the official one.

Printing more money doesn’t work.

What “works” are labor and goods. And if you don’t want to labor, you’ll just be breeding, at a faster rate than ever before, the haves and the have nots.

“Make the doctors and nurses work for nothing,” you say?

Well, duh, how long do you think that’s going to last?

The great doctors will be gone – retired – almost right away. After them, the good ones will soon leave. Worse, the ones that stay will have no incentive to try very hard. Why should they?


But remember old Doc Haskell that retired a couple of years back? Why I hear that he occasionally does a little work out on his ranch when someone comes along that really needs it. And you know what, those that “have” are seeking him out, asking him to help their loved ones, and compensating him for his time and expertise.

“Thanks Doc, you’re a God-send. Let me fix that old dishwasher of yours. I know how and I can get or make any parts it might need. And how about the outside of your house – I could put on some new paint; make it look really nice and neat.”

I’m willing to work. I’m good at it. I’m smart. I’m healthy.

Of course, I’m only good at some things. So I’ll try and stick to those, sell you those services where I know I can excel.

And you’ll be very glad to have me working for you. And you’ll thank me for it and, if you’re not as dumb as your complacency makes it appear, you’ll figure out that if you compensate me for my work, I’ll come back and do more for you.

That’s how it works, you know?

I do something for you and, yep, I expect something in return.

That’s the way it has worked for thousands of years. It’s human nature. Government can’t legislate that away.

So, yes please, drop out of the game. Don’t compete. Sit on the sidelines.

Ayn Rand was wrong, by the way. She predicted that the do-ers would, when taxed and legislated so they could no longer compete, they would start dropping out. They would disappear. They would stop do-ing.

But she was wrong because the do-ers “do” because they like to “have done.” They like to compete because they know they can win. Deny them success in one area and they’ll move to another.

Winners like winning. They find a way. They re-read the rules and think up something new. That’s where the forward pass came from in football, you know?

They change the rules so they can win. That’s why the rich are so invested – yes, I said “invested” – in politics. They are changing the rules so they can win.

And winners make up entirely new games, ones no one else thought of. That’s called “invention” and, guess what, we’re good at that game. We know how to tinker, to dabble, to try this, try that, try something else until, Eureka! We have something new.

Why is Dr. Erlich’s famous formula called 606? Because it was concoction number six hundred and six that worked to kill syphilis without killing the patient.

How many materials and preparation techniques did Edison’s lab work through before they tried baking carbon granules onto a cotton thread and “burning it” by sending an electric current through it in an evacuated glass bulb?

How many variations did Henry Ford try before he ended up with the Model A?

Oh yeah, we’re good at inventing.

So you go ahead and quit.

Please do.

You’ll make it that much easier for the rest of us that are still out there playing the game.

Watch my dust … and you can expect to pay for it one way or another.

You will. And you’ll thank me for it, too.

Addendum: In follow-up emails with my son, he commented:

"I 'do' because the act in itself has intrinsic value. I like creating value for myself or for some purpose. I guess it comes down to having a good work ethic because you understand that work itself is a good thing because it produces something where there was nothing. I don't like doing for others who don't reciprocate / don't have an appreciation for why people do things. When faced with a choice of doing things for non-doers, such as the group of losers [identity deleted] or doing something for myself such as a house project like building a steam shower, I choose the latter."

His steam shower is utterly fabulous, by the way, both in function and in construction.


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