At least so far... We are still relatively early in the 21st century.
This spring i've been dealing with a lot of collective organizations. ..attending commencements, interacting with police, fire depts, insurance companies, charitable fund raisers, etc. I am always amazed at the levels of entitlement among people involved in public institutions. The widening chasm in the American Discourse is also a matter of great concern to me, as entitlement sweeps the next generation, & each new crop of young people seem more entitled than the one before. Why? What is the source of this mindset? Why do people believe that other people owe them a living?
I have been a philosopher & a student of the human animal all of my life. I am constantly intrigued by the root motivations of people, & the source of thinking & the evolution of philosophical agendas. The more i observe humanity, & analyze the thinking processes, motivations, & mindset of people, the more i have concluded that there are core differences in our perceptions about Reality. There are misconceptions that build upon each other, to arrive at a mythical view of Reality that has no basis. The fundamentals are flawed, & the subsequent conclusions are based on faulty assumptions.
Myth: Govt creates money.
IMO, this is the central flaw of modern progressivism. This is where leftist thought begins in their perception of reality, & where all other flaws in their thinking & conclusions originate. The reason is that this is not really a myth. Govt DOES print money. But they do not create the SOURCE of wealth.. they do not originate the True Source of money. Unfortunately, this myth is not only with the progressive left. It is sweeping the thinking of conservatives & other philosophical world views.
Money is merely a symbol of wealth. It is a means of exchange. All wealth in the human collective is created by Labor. Somebody has to work to create wealth, which is then represented by govt printed money. The ONLY source of wealth is in productive labor. The engine that drives the Human Economic Train is productive labor for the survival needs of humanity.
Sustenance: Food & water
Protection: Housing, clothing, defense from the elements & predators.
Those are the essentials. You can live without a smart phone, but not without water. You don't need tv or music, but you won't live long without food. EVERYTHING that we do is predicated on someone working for these essentials, & the rest of us buying their products with the fruits of our own labors.THAT is the Human Economy: You work & produce a needed commodity. Someone else does the same. You trade your products. ALL of the wealth generated in a society is done at the survival level. Luxuries & incidentals come later. Observation of many 3rd world countries, all of the animal kingdom, & the history of man should make this plainly obvious, but for some reason, it is increasingly mysterious, & the source of wealth is seen as coming from a Magical Provider: The Govt.
Bastiat wrote of this in the 1800s:
"Government is the great fiction through which everybody endeavors to live at the expense of everybody else." ~Frederic Bastiat
For the most part, people do not see themselves as mooching off of other people. They believe that Govt has a Mystical Ability to provide all the necessities of life: Food, clothing, housing, health care, pensions, & jobs. But that is a flawed perception of govt. Human governance is merely a collective action for justice & social protection. That is its prime directive. The working people of the land provide their hard earned wealth to PAY someone to administer justice & protection in society. That is the essence of Govt. And when those in this protective role use their assigned power to plunder & exploit the working man, they have failed in their basic duty, & no longer provide a useful service. They have become complicit with the looters of the working man, & no longer protect his labors. They have joined with the predators & eventually the working producers of the land cast them out & organize a new collective system of govt. Historically, the changes in human governance have not always brought periods of freedom & prosperity. Most of the time, it has been, 'Meet the new Boss... same as the old Boss'.
The Reality is that SOMEONE has to work & produce the necessities of life. Govt does not create food, housing, or clothing. They can only TAKE from those who have. That is why redistribution has a look & feel of Govt as the source of these things. The recipients of the free stuff do not see the force employed in taking it from someone else. They imagine huge warehouses of stuff.. a goose that lays golden eggs, or a money tree that generates the necessities of life automatically. They do not see themselves as mooching off of other people, but merely taking their fair share from the govt.
But it is a lie. It is Fiction. Govt has NOTHING, except what they take by force from someone who has worked. The champions of govt like to portray it as govt making things fair. The evil corporate exploiters of the working man are the targets of their Social Justice, not the actual working man. But that is a diversion. The corporate exploiters of the working man are ALMOST ALWAYS complicit with the govt looters. They work together in harmony to fleece the producers of the nation, to enrich themselves & to empower themselves with votes from useful idiots who believe the Lie. But they do not actually fleece the evil corporatists. All they ever do is plunder the working man.
As long as this perception of money & wealth remains, entitlement & collectivist delusion will continue. People do not see their survival needs coming through productive interdependency, but from a Magical Provider. Govt has become the new god, & the free stuff is manna in the wilderness.