Category Archives: irresponsibility

A culture of dependence, entitlement and irresponsibility

Dalrymple notes that the thesis of False Black Power? (2017; in the New Threats to Freedom series) by Jason Riley (author of Please Stop Helping Us: How Liberals Make It Harder for Blacks to Succeed of 2014) is that

America’s black political leaders, and their white liberal allies, have hindered rather than advanced the progress of the black population. Initially well-meaning policies have undermined the self-help ethos that was a characteristic of black culture in the century between the end of the Civil War and the beginning of the Great Society.

These policies, says Dalrymple,

caused a culture of dependence, entitlement and irresponsibility that did not exist before, and is inimical to progress, to put it mildly.

Yet

black political leadership and their white political allies persist in believing, or at least in pretending they believe, that this disastrous culture is the direct and inevitable consequence of an apostolic succession, so to speak, of slavery, Jim Crow policies, and racial prejudice. Their prescription has been political action to destroy not only the practical effects of prejudice (for example, through positive discrimination and quotas) but prejudice itself, through a reform of language and thought. A New Man, long the dream of utopian totalitarians, will have to be created.

Dalrymple points out that

the culture that has emerged, grown up, and been encouraged in the black ares of cities such as Chicago, Baltimore, Washington and Philadelphia, is inimical to progress of any kind.

Of course, efforts

to conjure progress or improvement by bureaucratic, administrative, or redistributionist fiat are doomed to time-wasting and expensive failure. In raising expectations that cannot be met, these efforts stoke the fires of conflict.

Dalrymple likens the liberal political establishment to

a stuck record. It cannot change without having to admit that its prescriptions were mistaken, for to do so would destroy its raison d’être and outlook. What started as a desire to do good has ended as a desire to feel good.

On bastardy

In the wasteland, rights multiply but duties wither away

Dalrymple writes that he meets in his patients almost daily

a combination of aggressive irresponsibility and self-righteous resentment.

Mothers with four children by three different fathers

complain accusingly that their lives are difficult, as though something else were to be expected. The deficiency is not a cognitive one: they know where babies come from and they know about contraception. Our hospital serves a quarter of the city, and 70% of the children born here are illegitimate. Either bastardy is not confined to the underclass, or the underclass is much larger than commonly supposed.

There is no intrinsic reason why unmarried parents should not look after their children perfectly well, though

many surgical operations can be performed on the kitchen table, but that is no reason why they should not be performed in hospital.

Dalrymple lives in

a world so liberal that no stigma attaches to anything (with the exception of constructive effort at school).

This world without penalties,

where anything and everything is both understood and forgiven, and where everyone expects rewards irrespective of his or her own behaviour, is a nightmare world without meaning.

The curse of welfarism

Screen Shot 2015-10-27 at 10.42.01

Young British mothers

Dalrymple writes that there is in the West, and especially in Britain,

a rising tide of neglect, cruelty, Sadism, and joyous malignity.

Where does the evil come from? Dalrymple points out that

a necessary, though not sufficient, condition is the welfare state, which makes it possible, and sometimes advantageous, to behave like this.

Fatherhood

Young British fathers

The State

is the parent of last resort—or of first resort. The State gives assistance to the mother of any child, once it has come into being. In matters of public housing, it is advantageous for a mother to put herself at a disadvantage, to be a single mother, without support from the fathers of the children and dependent on the State for income. She is then a priority; she won’t pay local taxes, rent, or utility bills.

Screen Shot 2015-10-27 at 10.39.30As for the men, the State

absolves them of all responsibility for their children. The State is father to the child. The biological father is free to use whatever income he has as pocket money, for entertainment and little treats. He is reduced to the status of a child, though a spoilt child with the physical capabilities of a man: petulant, demanding, querulous, self-centred, and violent. The violence escalates and becomes a habit. A spoilt brat becomes an evil tyrant.