WELFARE AS PAYMENT FOR GOOD BEHAVIOR

Bottom line. There are people who can’t shine, who can’t participate meaningfully in production, who have (at best) little more than minimum wage to look forward to, if they play by the rules.

If you ask those people to refrain from parasitism and criminality, you are asking them to bear a substantial cost (an opportunity cost) because those may well be their best options.

People will not support and order that does not work for them. If you want them to bear the costs it demands, there are 2 ways to make it worthwhile for them to bear it. You can punish them for not bearing it (for engaging in parasitism and criminality) or you can reward them for bearing it (for refraining from the same.) People WILL support an order that works for them.

It’s worth examining which approach is cheaper or more effective at accomplishing the same end. Perhaps it’s some combination of them.

If you elect to offer positive incentives, as well as negative, it’s not an entitlement, it’s not even charity, it’s a productive exchange, because the productive need law, order, and stability, in order to produce. If it’s cheaper to BUY the cooperation of the unproductive in maintaining the conditions necessary for production, than it is to compel it, then that purchase is a profitable one, and the surpluses it generates may rightly be shared between those party to the deal.

But care must be taken not to simply subsidize the reproduction and relative increase of the underclasses, or the cost of purchasing their cooperation will only increase until it becomes impossible or uneconomical to bear.

It is incumbent upon lords, not only to destroy and defend, but also to provide. That’s not foolishness, but pragmatism.

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