Roper: What is ‘moral’ government?

By Rob Roper

There has been a steady stream of testimony over the past two years on the proposed $15 minimum wage and the mandatory paid family leave program concluding that they will hurt the Vermont economy — they will cost people their jobs, negatively impact business, make government more expensive, and negatively impact state GDP.

Rob Roper

Rob Roper is the president of the Ethan Allen Institute.

Every indication is that a majority of legislators simply don’t care. Rather than listen to the evidence and reach the logical (dare I say “moral”) conclusion that these things may have sounded like good ideas, but they are clearly not, and move on, they are coming up with emotion-based rationalities to go forward anyway.

The latest expression of this is an op-ed by freshman Rep. Randall Szott, D-Barnard, titled, “Toward a ‘Moral Economy’.”  In it he writes, “In much of the testimony on those bills we heard quite a bit about how they would affect businesses and the economy.

Such information is important and useful, but I ran for office to consider bigger questions as well,” and opines about “values that don’t fit into a spreadsheet.” That’s all well and good, but his conclusions that inflicting significant pain on a majority of Vermonters because the underlying feeling surrounding these policies is one of “caring” is really twisted.

So, what is the moral role of government and those in power? It is best expressed in the Declaration of Independence, which states:

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.

In other words, the legitimate functions of government are to keep people safe and leave us alone to pursue our own ambitions as each of us sees fit — not as government sees fit. We do not elect representatives to make decisions for us about whether or not to purchase insurance products. Their job is to make sure we are free to make these decisions on our own. It is not their job to negotiate a fair wage between employer and employee. Their job is to make sure we are free to reach these agreements on our own, pursuing happiness in accordance with our own vision and convictions. Not theirs.

The wisdom of this can be seen in Rep. Szott’s background. He is a chef with a master’s degree in fine arts. I have no reason to doubt he is excellent in these endeavors. But what does he know about running, for example, a gas station convenience store in general, let alone a specific convenience store dealing with specific challenges? Probably not much and nothing at all respectively. Yet this guy and 76 or more people like him have come to the conclusion that making these decisions for us from a position of profound ignorance and lack of expertise is the “moral” thing to do. I don’t think so.

Rob Roper is president of the Ethan Allen Institute. Reprinted with permission from the Ethan Allen Institute Blog.

Image courtesy of Public domain

17 thoughts on “Roper: What is ‘moral’ government?

  1. What’s worse than not caring is someone deceiving the people that they claim to be helping..

    People claiming this AR unifying others when in reality they are losing one group after another because of the lies they tell

    When the truth is made evidence they try to degrade you and then block you on their pages

    People be aware of who you are dealing with

    Beware of false prophets…

  2. They want us to argue about the dollar amount for minimum wage, that is the trap. When we fall for their trap, they win every time. They are not in the least bit concerned about the well being of the poor, raising the minimum wage has nothing to do with their welfare….it seems to, it buys votes and sways public opinion for those uneducated.

    We can not continue to fall for their trap! To fall for their framing of the argument.

    Conservatives want people to own their own homes.
    Conservatives want people to make much more than minimum wage.
    Conservatives want strong healthy families, economically and financially.

    The DNC trap, want’s none of this, because they are making money, lots of it, by keeping people in subsidized housing, larger programs for broken families, independent business people, making their own hours and wages. The NWO plan wants none of this.

    It’s good to remind people, yeah, we have one of the highest minimum wages in the nation, in the world in fact, yet we can’t afford anything. That’s because of our socialist/cronyist tendancies, that like and foster government/monopoly control, which never favors the little guy. That’s why we are unaffordable, that’s why the first rung of the ladder is so tough in Vermont.

    • Correct on many points. All you have to do is look across the boarder to to NH that follows the federal min wage yet has one of the highest median incomes in New England, let alone the US.

      Look just to the South to one of the richest states in the nation that is now falling flat on it’s face and is loosing jobs in an otherwise booming economy is just about every state in the US.

      “Economist Donald Klepper-Smith with DataCore Partners, who was the state’s chief economic adviser under former Gov. M. Jodi Rell, said he believes — at this pace — Connecticut could not regain all jobs lost in the last recession until mid-2021.

      Unfortunately, Connecticut also is at risk of falling into a “full-blown recession” by then, Klepper-Smith said, adding that “raises serious questions about the state’s fiscal health over the near-term.””

  3. Welcome to politics in Vermont, Liberal Agenda …….. morals, they’re gone !!

    Wake up, people…………………….

  4. Rob, you aren’t smoking enough of the Astro Turf, if you inhale really deep, hold it down in the bottom of you lungs, you too can see and bring nirvana to Vermont.

    It’s all about the really deep hold. Then you will become all know and all seeing, you will become the demi-god known locally as a Vermont Legislator. You’ll be able solve all problems by writing a law. With the quick stroke of a pen, all matters of inequity, crimes, injustice, pollution will be solved.

    You too can become part of the elite, do not resist, it is futile. They have the majority, this is a democracy….inhale, hold….join elite, become part of the Astro Turf Aristocracy….you too can be a made man, we can protect your monopolies, you too can be bought and paid for by lobbyists and PACs.

    Inhale Deep, Hold…..Astro Turf very, very good for you.

  5. Even a chef should comprehend math — the money supply does not respond to “values” any more than “values” will make dough rise. Of course morality should infuse government, but it is immoral to ignore the mathematics of economics. Milton friedman points out that falsely inflating wages causes a spiral of inflation. That is immoral, by most values. Then there are the other immoral consequences referenced by Mr. Roper.

    • This is all so incredibly sophomoric. That mentality, which raises the “caring” aspect involved in sound decision making above “practically” confronting circumstances on a factual basis with Vermonters “Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness” in mind, cannot be argued out of their heads. Neither, apparently, can it be voted out of office. Seems we, and ultimately VT, are doomed.

  6. Interesting to view Szott’s bio, briefly:
    Randall Szott earned a B.A. in Liberal Arts from the University of Central Florida, a Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Art from San Francisco State University, and a Master of Fine Arts in Art Critical Practices from Ohio State University. Szott’s professional experience includes working as a chef for fifteen years in catering, fine dining,

    Some people can’t walk and chew gum at the same time. Welcome to VT, you learned a lot of crapology and became a know-it-all.

    What happened there is and has happened in VT. In Chittenden County there are 6 Senators, 24 Districts, and 36 representatives. That has become VT and satellite lawmakers like Szott on the fringes. They step in unison like Hitlers army to control VT in one voice. This video explains a lot. It’s what’s going on behind the scenes and makes what is happening understandable. Commenters complain as I have, but a new direction needs to be organized. The video, there are more like it. I’ll do another in another appropriate TNR atticle.

    Came across a very good video from FOX about Colorado and the outside money and how the scenario is spreading throughout the US. There’s outside money in pockets of the “Take VT Forward” bunch.
    Rocky Mountain Heist on Kelly File (Fox News) (11:14)

    • I meant to type in the sentence “What happened There”……to mean “What happened in Colorado….” Sorry, hope you didn’t have to scratch your head to understand.

      PS read Szott’s full bio at the Gov Legislative web page. He’s a good writer about himself.

    • Viewed that 5 yr old video, which was followed by
      the production referred to in the Kelly File vid.

      Just replace Colorado with Vermont. Sounds just like what’s going on here at an accelerating rate.

      How many will listen? How many will care? How many will act?

      • You’re right about the Vid you referenced. I was going to release the link at another time. I figured I’d introduce a shorter version now as some have a short attention span.

        These Vids make the VT scene realized, Montpelier is very entrenched into this attitude and links the outside money and influence. With the Burn being a millionaire, he’s in that money crowd to change this country. He’s just more open to it.

        • You guys brought some great videos to share really great and great that this forum allows people to share and discuss, unlike the fascist “news” organization known as Vermont Digger. So, yeah there’s the plan. Really a Vermont plan, just shortened and executed today rather than across our 30-40 year take over.

          When dealing with a pest that has taken over a perfectly good crop, which is akin to socialism/NWO infesting a perfectly good constitutional republic you look for the weak links and their are many.

          They rely on money, drugged populace, ignorance, envy and greed. Their true colors are not to protect the poorest nor to help them, they want to make money and have power, it’s they ultimate crony government. Bernie finally gets to show his true colors as they all do when they get money and power……they don’t want to share any of it.

          How do you win? Make them spend, spend, spend. Expose their lies and true heart. Show love for your neighbor, don’t let them bait you with the arguments they are controlling and winning in the court of public opinion, fostered by the propagandist press. We need to come together, 12, then 100, then a 1000 and then 10,000. With this amount of people we can start to make a difference.

          We need to bring the independents, Kennedy democrats and conservatives together. It is not “bring all the conservatives in a tight wagon formation”….we need to have a big tent and not needless trigger or offend our neighbors for no particular reason. Most have no idea the ideological struggle and take over going on, they just don’t know, why kick them out by offending them?

          Leave the DNC robots, the progressives/sjw/communists and rinos to fend for themselves in the swill of their own making and despair.

          Our forefathers guaranteed us the right to assembly, for times like these.

  7. The Fascist Taliban that inhabits Montpelier are a group of the most IMMORAL creatures. I say creatures as they are for the wanton killing of new born babies,much as Sodom and Gomorrah fame as they are the same un Godly creatures as written of.

  8. “Rep. Szott’s background. He is a chef with a master’s degree in fine arts. I have no reason to doubt he is excellent in these endeavors. But what does he know about running, for example, a gas station …”

    So does Chef Szott pay his dishwasher and bus boy $15 an your, $22 overtime, with health care, family leave, ETC – ad nauseum????? Did his first job pay $15?

  9. The problem being the One’s saying it’s a moral thing are the most IMMORTAL people there
    are. These are the people that want to restrict your right to defend yourself and your right
    of speech. The also are fans of INFANTICIDE to the point of wanting to change the states
    constitution to protect the KILLING rights on humans unable to defend themselves.

    They also want to encourage children to not be who they are but what peg they fit in the bizzaro world
    of lefty lane. The leftist fascist should be bursting out in flames when ever they use the word moral..if there
    was real justice in this world

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