Why is government paternalism wrong?

Larrey

Ad Honorem
Sep 2011
5,828
The idea of ''people are dumb, so they shouldn't rule themselves'' has another side of the coin: What of the paternal leaders who are supposed to guide the people? They are still human after all and can make as many mistakes as anyone and so are equally ''dumb''. We can see in cases like North Korea where the leaders, who should care for their people just enrich themselves and push their people aside.

The only good dictatorship like this is enlightened absolutism, but this depends on the monarch winning the birth lottery and being born intelligent with a desire to learn, advance his nation and be benevolent to his people which is very, very rare.

I think that a compromise and a ''good'' government is some form of a semi-constitutional monarchy were power is shared between a powerful monarch and a democratic parliament, but people, being people will always find a way to find flaws in everything. Utopia is impossible to create and an ideal government can not exist, trying to create it will usually make a Dystopia.
That's a kind of formula already the ancient Greek laboured with: If the tyrant in a good man then hypothetically it all should turn out alright. Unfortunately the position of tyrant itself corrupts, and so eventually the good-man-as-tyrant-situation turns sour. People should rather be subject to and ruled by laws than tyrants.
 

deaf tuner

Ad Honoris
Oct 2013
14,533
Europix
Why is government paternalism wrong?


Cause government isn't my father.

It's simply a bunch of persons (supposedly) running a country.

If I wanna fix my plumbery, I can (if I can) choose. But even if I can't choose him, he's still to fix my plumbery, not to become my father.

My government isn't different in anyway from my plumber.
 
Feb 2019
941
Serbia
That's a kind of formula already the ancient Greek laboured with: If the tyrant in a good man then hypothetically it all should turn out alright. Unfortunately the position of tyrant itself corrupts, and so eventually the good-man-as-tyrant-situation turns sour. People should rather be subject to and ruled by laws than tyrants.
This plays into the naturally intelligent ruler type. People like Frederick the Great or Joseph II come to mind, they were not corrupt and were benevolent but this type of ruler is extremely rare, as such the ''good man tyrant'' is almost impossible to get.
 
Apr 2018
979
Upland, Sweden
Paternalism is wrong because father is not always right. Besides, it's not necessarily about being right - it's about becoming right.

I like a bit of anarchy and experimentation. Trying to make top-down rules for everything in society is a sign of weakness, not strength. Such a system lacks adaptability it seems to me. Sure, there will be "problems" in the sense of disagreements, conflicts etc. that have to be handled. But this also means that people will become adept at handling such conflicts. In a society where the God King/ State/ Holy Father decides everything for you you are essentially making most of the country into children.

I would like as many of the people in my country to be adults, and not just the person(s) on top of the pyramid...
 

YouLoveMeYouKnowIt

Ad Honorem
Oct 2013
4,574
Canada
I want freedom from reality TV, freedom from ugly people, freedom from nasty beer amd freedom from vegetarians.
Freedom from reality TV versus Freedom from hunger
Freedom from ugly people versus Freedom from abject poverty
Freedom from nasty beer versus Freedom from socially acceptable/blind eye to spousal rape
Freedom from vegetarians versus Freedom from rampant corruption
 

Naomasa298

Forum Staff
Apr 2010
35,374
T'Republic of Yorkshire
Freedom from reality TV versus Freedom from hunger
Freedom from ugly people versus Freedom from abject poverty
Freedom from nasty beer versus Freedom from socially acceptable/blind eye to spousal rape
Freedom from vegetarians versus Freedom from rampant corruption
Your point?
 

YouLoveMeYouKnowIt

Ad Honorem
Oct 2013
4,574
Canada
Your point?
That your post was just low quality. You were comparing freedoms away from poverty and hunger, which are what the world, NGOs and charities are attempting to ameliorate and reduce, to freedom from nasty beer.

You may be free from reality TV by not watching it, free from nasty beer by not drinking it, etc...
 
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Rodger

Ad Honorem
Jun 2014
6,171
US
Is telling people they must stay in school until 16 paternalism?
Paternalism toward children is more acceptable because there is an assumption that they need a strong guiding hand. Our parents are first in line in that regard. Once we become adults we should have the liberty and freedom to generally participate in our decisions within reason, unless there is some kind of mental defect. Now, some may choose to act like children and let others rule over them. After all, what proper parent raises their child to be a dependent as an adult?