Crooks and narcissists exist everywhere, but they operate best when they have a system to game. Capitalism is not a system; it is lightly regulated freedom. It lets businesses compete at pleasing consumers. Socialism causes consumers to compete with each other for government money and favors. The consumers elect representatives to compete on their behalf in Congress. Each district tries to get back at least what it paid in taxes, and hopefully more. Of course, more means stealing from other districts. The same occurs between businesses, who lobby for tax and regulatory advantages over their competitors, creating unfair playing fields. It also occurs among some individuals who receive entitlements, then feel entitled to cheat a faceless system that "owes" them.
Thus selfishness and theft are encouraged among regular folks by a system that is ironically named Socialism.* This fact is further shown by the dramatically higher rate of charitable generosity by Red States**. Blue States are more miserly for at least two reasons: 1. Blue State people figure that they're already donating plenty in the form of high taxes. 2. The private charity sector in Blue States is less robust due to government involvement.
Charity is a central requirement of every major religion, including Christianity, Islam and Judaism. The Bible requires 10% per year *** (tithe means tenth); Islam demands at least 2.5% . There is a vague consensus among most religions and most people about what qualifies as alms. Because of this universality, it is reasonable for religious societies to express that requirement through government in the form of government-mandated charity. It may even be reasonable for government to specify what charities are acceptable, such as we do with our 501C3 tax deduction laws.
However, few religions have specified where you must donate, except when churches have levied tithes. Certainly, no religion had mandated large donations to a government-run charity...until the religion of Socialism. Such laws are immoral because government does to charity what it does to any business that it tries to conduct: it ruins it. It does so in the usual ways: 1. by bloating the cost of bureaucratic administration, thereby reducing the money that gets to the needy. 2. by monopolizing the charity sector and destroying competition. 3. by adding political influence and political correctness, resulting in the mismanagement of funds. Two good examples of this are
a). the dependency class that is created when recipients are also voters. b). the misdirection of funds to inappropriate places in inappropriate amounts. Examples: i). questionable disabilities. ii). controversial causes, such as clinics for abortion or methadone
Next Lesson: Should Minus Can
* Why do I keep referring to Socialism? Liberalism, Socialism and Communism are varying degrees of the same "left-wing" idea. We have had all 3 elements in our society for 100 years. However in recent years, and particularly with the last election, there has been a radical shift in leftist rhetoric and agenda. More leftists, including close associates of the President, are openly Socialist. In the past, left-wing proposals were at least presented as so-called Safety Nets. Now they speak plainly about redistribution of wealth. The Liberal label is therefore too understating for today's Lefties.
** Red States are states that voted for George W Bush in 2004. The evidence of Red State generosity is well- documented in Arthur Brooks' book Who Really Cares.