Saturday, February 18, 2012

Brooks is Right About Bourgeois Paternalism

David Brooks issues a call for "bourgeois paternalism" to rebuild the organizations and structures that induce people to behave responsibly.

I believe he is exactly right.  And I can't think of a better word than "induce."  You can't force people to be responsible.  There is no foolproof way to raise them to be responsible.  No genes guarantee it.  No family structure can be attentive enough to get responsible results every time.

BUT orderly families in orderly communities which are at least trying, unequivocally, to promote responsible behavior and eliminate irresponsible behavior is essential.  No amount of incentive or coercion - the favored left and right strategies - will work without responsible people.


6 comments:

b said...

Inducing is good, forcing is bad...

alpha said...

b, that is what Brooks has against Mr. Obamacare...

Anonymous said...

Stop putting the men in prison, that would help.

"If the War on Drugs didn’t directly precipitate the Welfare State and the destruction of the American black family, why did welfare aid to families spike in lockstep with our prison population right as that War started? Well, if you’re familiar American drug laws, it shouldn’t surprise you that some 90% of those arrested under the Rockefeller Drug Laws in the years after its passage were minorities.
Sure, correlation doesn’t prove causation – but when you stop a moment and consider that marriage requires an eligible male, it’s not that hard to figure out why the modern Welfare State emerged in tandem with our War on Drugs, as it’s a little bit difficult to marry someone behind bars..."

http://tremblethedevil.com/?p=1693

gruntled said...

I have a week of posts about how I think we should end most of the drug war, starting here: http://gruntledcenter.blogspot.com/2009/04/marijuana-is-no-worse-than-bourbon.html

Wren said...

Yeah that's what we need, to marry drug using criminals...

Diane M said...

I don't think the phrase "bourgeois paternalism" will ever catch on. If he's serious, he needs to come up with a better name for PR purposes.