How Government Bureaucracies Solve Human Problems
Submitted by atlascott on Thu, 2010-06-17 19:48
Hat tip to Billy Beck for suggesting this article by Wendy McElroy about how people in positions of vulnerability are regarded as the inanimate by bureaucrats. Here's an excerpt:
"...A bit of reality needs to be injected into questions like "why do runaways and other homeless so often prefer to sleep on the street rather than be 'sheltered' by government?" I can only speak for myself but I think my reaction was a common one, or a common mixture. The only voluntary encounter I had with the subspecies of humanity known as "social worker" guaranteed that I would never willingly "turn myself into the authorities." Literally, I had to stand my ground in order to get a bed in which to sleep because I might have frozen outside; the clerk had to choose between housing me for one night or calling the police. When I did go to the second floor of the facility, I found dozens of empty beds. She clearly would have preferred me to freeze rather than fill out forms; only because the police call would have also required forms was I allowed to stay.
And, yet, people remain baffled by those in need who refuse government assistance. Part of the reason is that those people have never had to deal with Nanny State bureaucrats from a position of utter vulnerability. Civil servants process human beings as though they were slabs of meat; their goal is to reduce the meat to a number on paperwork that can be filed away. There is no more humanity in the various "welfare industries" than there is efficiency in postal workers, kindness at the DMV, or concern for dignity at airport screenings."
This is a part of Big Government that its proponents do not talk about. Individuals have humanity towards others. Bureaucrats as tools of Government do not.