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'Common Good"??


When I was young (seems like a long-long time ago) the term “common good” was broadly understood and we did not need admonitions from our “law givers” to remind us of our obligations. It meant succinctly something that benefited the majority directly and that as a consequence was supported broadly.Today that term seems to have morphed. Now the common good is served by giving in to every small group demanding largesse and then arguing the “common good” is served by the aggregate of all that pork (we all get a little piece). In the end everything is now for the “common good” with a resultant runaway recourse need. Why should our “law-givers” have to make choices and anger anyone – give in to everybody and call the result “the common good”!If we step back and think about it there are a couple of important points that get left out in the unceasing and vociferous calls for more. Are we all really benefiting or are the benefits focused on only a few? Are all the things we are doing of relative equal merit or are there a bunch of “dogs” in the mix? I know, we don’t like to judge! Baloney!Ever time my wife and I eat out we hear conversations proclaiming the war was criminal or that welfare recipients are abusing our largesse. Those are judgments. We need more not less! When our local “law givers” are busily adding new “goodies” to our budget every Tuesday night we should be paying attention and making clear our concerns. The LJW should be making those choices clearer for us. It is too late when you get to the annual budget cycle and our “law-givers” feed us false choices (cutting social services to address a less than 1% cut).In my opinion this whole process is a sophisticated and perpetual reelection campaign. It allows our elected officials to proffer public funds in return for political support. We think we are sophisticated here in Lawrence. In fact, we have progressed very little from the days of the “free” ham sandwich at the saloon down the street from the polls for when you vote the right way.


tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 1 month ago

Personally, I've abandoned the common good for the... uncommon.

devobrun 9 years, 1 month ago

If I engage the government I enable it. If I sign up for frequent flier miles, or loyalty cards to the grocery store I enable business.We live in a world where we are jerked around. If we move away from the largess then we are suckers for not availing ourselves of the wonderful programs. The paradox is that these manipulations are the programs generated by old hippies. The very people who cast off the shackles of the church and traditional life styles have replaced them with new ways of imposing behavior. Life has become one long blur of advertising, underwriting, raising awareness. Politicians are at the forefront of this media presented manipulation. The emotion surrounding the election of Obama is shocking. The idea that a politician should be so important in anybody's life is sad. Ditto for the KC Chiefs, The University of Kansas, etc. People are more sheep-like than before the 1960's revolution. They look to others for their safety, knowledge, spirit, and desires. They can't survive without their blackberries to keep up with the rest of the world at all times. Fed to them by manipulators. People are unaware of their connections to government and business. They are oblivious of their loss of self identity. They leap to their phones at the slightest hint of need for action. They want somebody to do something. More often than not, they look to the government.The common good of the past was in contrast to the individual good. Today there are no individuals. We are all one, as they say. Our individual good is the common good. If you don't partake, then you are the social outcast. If you don't love government solutions to individuals problems you are the problem. If you try to tell people that they are losing their identity in an orgy of mass communication via the latest electronic gadget, you are a Luddite.

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