There are basically two world views.
One believes (on a fundamental level) in ‘control’ as the solution to all problems; the other believes in ‘freedom’ as the solution to all problems. While there are countless positions along the spectrum in both directions, those are the two poles.
Government is necessary to maintain order, but how it should achieve this is the never-ending debate.
Control, or freedom?
How much control? How much freedom?
When appropriations run dry for running federal parks, we quickly see which view is currently in play. Understandably, the authorities want to make sure the people feel the pain so all will be motivated to come to a resolution more quickly.
However, here’s where the world view bubbles up:
One side intentionally creates that pain by barricading open air scenic views and monuments, since there will be no one available to clean up the trash or sweep the streets. The pain is intentionally inflicted, and, in fact, the authorities must go out of their way to inflict it.
The other side would leave the scenic views and monuments as they were, and allow the trash to pile up and the streets to get dirty. The pain is natural and consequential.
There will be pain either way; but in the first case it comes actively, and in the second case it comes passively.
In the first case, there is NOTHING the citizens can do to remedy the pain without the government allowing it (by passing a budget, or removing a barricade).
In the second case, the citizens are free to pitch in and voluntarily help, IF they choose.
It’s true that the trash may in fact stay there until the government workers return. That’s always a possibility, but in a national crisis, I think it’s an unlikely one.
The fact is, there’s an army of citizens in this country who take enough pride in their country that they would show up. Any local scout troop or church group would be honored to do just that.
They don’t need a paycheck from the government to pitch in, because they receive spiritual and psychological income – and they know it’s worth it. There are enough people in America who still know what that feels like, and they show up where there’s a need.
That is, unless they can’t GET to it because it’s been blocked by a barricade.
There you have it: control vs. freedom, in a nutshell.
10/10/13 Update: FreedomWorks organizes a volunteer crew to clean up DC on Saturday
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