View from the Bottom

Hillsdale College is a private University that offers their publication “Imprimus” free to anyone who wishes to take the time to read the words of professional people from the perspective of independent, responsible citizens who understand that the values of a moral society raise people up. This elevation is not due to government, but from the individuals natural desire to be better and to reap the rewards of their efforts.

This month’s Imprimus focus’s on the view from the bottom. What is the view from the bottom? It is the ripple that society has created by convincing generations of people that social assistance is owed to them for their mere existence. That personal comments of receipt of a  welfare check has gone from, “I receive my check,” to “I get paid.” The results of such that nation’s like England and the United States have become desperate to import foreign labor because of:

There are three reasons that I can think of why we imported foreign labor to do unskilled work while maintaining large numbers of unemployed people. The first is that we had destroyed all economic incentive for the latter to work. The second is that the foreigners were better in any case, because their character had not been rotted; they were often better educated—it is difficult to plumb the shallows of the British state educational system for children of the poorest homes—and had a much better work ethic. And the third was the rigidity of the housing market that made it so difficult for people to move around once they had been granted the local privilege of subsidized housing.

Please take a moment to read this month’s publication of Imprimus and look deep inside for its implications. Does it disclose a cautionary tale whereby generations of good people are convinced that they should be contented to receive handouts from their government for their mere existence? Everyone I know derives a warm glow from a good days work. How good does it feel to sit down and relax in a clean home? A well kept yard? The joy of retiring to fresh bedding? These things require personal effort, or the money to pay someone to do it for you. All of this requires personal industry, or the ability to earn the money to pay others to be industrious for your benefit.

~ Kris Halterman

The Worldview that Makes the Underclass

Theodoredalrymple.jpgAnthony Daniels / Writer and Doctor / Anthony Daniels writes as Theodore Dalrymple

I worked for 15 years as a doctor and psychiatrist in a general hospital in a poor area of a British city and in the prison next door, where I was on duty one night in three. The really dangerous people were in the hospital, perhaps because of the presence in the prison next door of very large uniformed men who exerted a strangely calming effect on the prisoners. In the hospital, I personally examined many thousands of patients who had attempted suicide or at least made a suicidal gesture (not quite the same thing of course). They were overwhelmingly from poor homes, and each patient told me of the lives of the three, four, or five people closest to them—and I spoke to many of those people as well. I could not, of course, have spoken to so many people, and heard about so many others, without some general impressions forming themselves in my mind. One abiding impression was of the violence of their lives, particularly that between the sexes—largely the consequence of the fluidity of relations between the sexes—and also of the devastating effect of prevalent criminality upon the quality of daily existence.

Before I did this work, I had spent a number of years working as a doctor in Africa and in other places in the Third World. I also crossed Africa by public transport, such as it was, and consequently saw much of that continent from the bottom up. These experiences also helped me in my understanding of what I was later to see in England. As Dr. Johnson put it, all judgment is comparative; or as Kipling said, “What should they know of England who only England know?” Indeed, what should anyone know of anywhere, who only that place knows?

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