I'm a Conservative and Big Government Works for Me
As I was standing in the WalMart line yesterday, wondering if I would notice the difference between Kraft brand Mac n Cheese and Great Value brand Mac n Cheese, I noticed something about the spending habits of 3 people in front of me. All three had more food than I and all three paid with food stamps.
As I was passing through the aisles, prior to check out, I would see the "WIC Approved" sign on many of the items I was buying. Due to my current status as a deadbeat graduate student, my family and I could very easily qualify for many programs; food stamps, housing, bill assistance, etc. But, based on principle, specifically the principle that these programs are not the proper function of government, we decline to participate.
But, as I thought more, I realized that my salary comes from big government. My graduate position is supported by federal grants for research. The pittance of compensation that my masters in the ivory tower so graciously bequeath to me on a monthly basis comes from federal monies.
How is a conservative to reconcile this? Now that so many industries accept government money, or are downright dependent upon government, I'm sure I'm not alone in this conundrum. Should we simply refrain from accepting government jobs that are not in line with the proper role of government?
Do we accept the government money, participate in food stamps or government health insurance when we qualify? Doesn't such behavior support in a very real way the practices of recklessness that we deride in big government?