Entitlements – The High Cost of Good Intentions

In 1883, Otto von Bismarck enacted a series of stated-funded social programs geared towards offering direct financial assistance to poorer segments of German society. Often viewed cynically as an attempt at staving off socialist revolution in the working class, Bismarck’s system for the rapidly industrializing (and militarizing) nation has proven a model for many governments worldwide. As government spending has swelled in places that adopted the welfare model such as France reaching as high as 50% and public debt surpassing 100% of GDP, however, many are questioning the sustainability of ever more “free” handouts. Tonight, we discuss the appeal, the mechanics, and the peril of the welfare state in general, the United States in particular, and its prospects going forward.


Myth of the 20th Century – Episode 161 – Entitlements – The High Cost of Good Intentions

— References —

– Healthcare Reform Is About Protecting Monopolies, The Last Psychiatrist (2010) – https://thelastpsychiatrist.com/2010/01/healthcare_reform_is_about_pro.html
– The serious consequences of the negative interest rates, Hess (2015) – https://www.swissbanking.org/en/services/insight/1.15/the-serious-consequences-of-the-negative-interest-rates
– Excess Management Is Costing the U.S. $3 Trillion Per Year, Hamel and Zanini (2016) – https://hbr.org/2016/09/excess-management-is-costing-the-us-3-trillion-per-year
– The High Cost of Good Intentions, Cogan (2017)
– Social Security, Medicare and other human services are a growing share of government spending, Pew Research Center (2017) – https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/04/04/what-does-the-federal-government-spend-your-tax-dollars-on-social-insurance-programs-mostly/ft_17-04-03_budget_420px/
– American Cauldron – Immigration and Its Discontents, Myth of the 20th Century (2017) – https://myth20c.wordpress.com/2017/08/17/american-cauldron-immigration-and-its-discontents/
– The Progressive Era – Roots of American Bureaucracy, Myth of the 20th Century (2018) – https://myth20c.wordpress.com/2018/09/05/the-progressive-era-roots-of-american-bureaucracy/
– U.S. national health expenditure as percent of GDP from 1960 to 2019 – https://www.statista.com/statistics/184968/us-health-expenditure-as-percent-of-gdp-since-1960/
– Entitlement Spending – https://www.usgovernmentspending.com/entitlement_spending

One Comment Add yours

  1. Earl Shetland says:

    It erodes support for the likes of Bernie – for 13% of the population, healthcare and college are already free.


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