We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Governments suffer from grandiosity. They think that they can fix everything. Worse they believe that they should fix everything. It never occurs to them to fix themselves except around election time. When they do recognize their own brokenness they treat it as a symptom of the brokenness of the real world.
They conclude that the problem is not that their national health care plans are unworkable, but that there are too many fat people in the country. Bring down the number of fat people and there will be plenty of money left over for everything else. Get everyone to stop smoking, get them to eat their vegetables, floss twice a day and take the best possible care of themselves and the cost of health care will go down.
The Soviet Union similarly concluded that the problem was not with their collective farm system, it was with the people working on them. It didn't matter that wheat had been grown much more plentifully and efficiently before the rise of the red flag. It didn't matter that regions which had once been wheat exporters were now forced to import wheat from capitalist countries. The system was perfect, which meant that the people had to be made perfect enough to allow it to fulfill its potential.
Always enjoyed that Berthold Brecht quote about when a government is displeased with the people, the government should elect a new people.
“our three great democracies will demonstrate to all mankind that they, both in wartime and in peacetime, will remain true to the high principles of freedom, dignity, and happiness of the people. That is why I attach such paramount importance to good neighbourly relations between a restored Poland and the Soviet Union. It was for the freedom and independence of Poland that Britain went into this war. The British feel a sense of moral responsibility to the Polish people, to their spiritual values. It is also important that Poland is a Catholic country. We cannot allow internal developments there to complicate our relations with the Vatican…”
“How many divisions does the Pope of Rome have?” Stalin asked, suddenly interrupting Churchill’s line of reasoning.
Churchill stopped short. He had not expected such a question. After all, he was speaking about the moral influence of the Pope, not only in Poland, but, also, throughout the world. Once again, Stalin reaffirmed that he only respected force, and brought Churchill back down to earth from the nebulous heavens.
Stalin liked to repeat his jokes. However, it is doubtful whether he dared to send a reply to the severe statement of Pius XII, “You can tell my son Joseph that he will meet my divisions in heaven”.
It seems a famous doctor in his later years announced he was testing a cure for teenage acne. Funding secured and volunteers at the ready, he prepared a group of 13-year-olds for the procedure, and then would follow their progress up until they were 18. All in all, a reasonable method of doing things.
The control group was selected, and the experimental group was readied for surgery. The doctor's research drew a connection between acne and spleen injuries, and his method was to forcibly remove the subject's spleen with a claw-hammer like device to replicate the injury condition. Now with all the surgeries completed, all that was left to do was wait and observe.
Unfortunately, after six months, all the experimental subjects had died from complications due to surgery. Ever the empiricist, the doctor announced that the experiment was incomplete as five years had not passed. However, he would re-examine his process and find a solution.
The next year, he called for more volunteers. This time, he would use a bigger hammer.