There is a rather well known phrase from the bible that is a good place to start. "When I was a child I spoke as a child I understood as a child I thought as a child; but when I became a man I put away childish things." I Cor. xiii. 11. Most of us here are adults and most of us here attempt to view things from an adult viewpoint. While we come to different conclusions we are very much not children...I hope. Sadly the nature of some comments I found in an article needs to be addressed and I would like your view of them.
From a Wall Street Journal Article.
When it comes to greenhouse-gas emissions, Energy Secretary Steven Chu sees Americans as unruly teenagers and the Administration as the parent that will have to teach them a few lessons.In so many ways I find this offensive as I have looked at the issues and come to a conclusion. To say that a conclusion that they might find in opposition to them as childish goes back to something I read long ago that has guided me in many ways when I view our government.
Speaking on the sidelines of a smart grid conference in Washington, Dr. Chu said he didn’t think average folks had the know-how or will to to change their behavior enough to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions.
“The American public…just like your teenage kids, aren’t acting in a way that they should act,” Dr. Chu said. “The American public has to really understand in their core how important this issue is.” (In that case, the Energy Department has a few renegade teens of its own.)
Immanuel Kant was a German philosopher during the late 1700's. While some of his views were 'odd' there was one from his writings "Principles of Rights" that has struck me as being very important in todays society with our slowly encrouching government.
'No one has a right to compel me to be happy in the peculiar way in which he may think of the well-being of other men; but everyone is entitled to seek his own happiness in the way that seems to him best, if it does not infringe the liberty of others in striving after a similar end for themselves when their Liberty is capable of consisting with the Right of Liberty in all others according to possible universal laws.'*A Government founded upon the principle of Benevolence towards the people*after the analogy of a father to his children, and therefore called a paternal Government*would be one in which the Subjects would be regarded as children or minors unable to distinguish what is beneficial or injurious to them. These subjects would be thus compelled to act in a merely passive way; and they would be trained to expect solely from the Judgment of the Sovereign and just as he might will it, merely out of his goodness, all that ought to make them happy. Such a Government would be the greatest conceivable Despotism; for it would present a Constitution that would abolish all Liberty in the Subjects and leave them no Rights.People throw around the term Socialist, Fascist and all other terms with little knowledge of what they really mean. I fins that using the term "paternalistic" works the best as it is understandable, and shows how both parties work towards the worst of Kant's Paternalistic government view.
We now have a member of the government admitting that yes we are living in Kant's paternalistic governmet. His honesty that we are ALL children and need to be guided by the parents should be offensive to both sides of the party spetrum.
It should be noted that the article ends with this blurb
Energy Department spokesman Dan Leistikow added: “Secretary Chu was not comparing the public to teenagers. He was saying that we need to educate teenagers about ways to save energy. He also recognized the need to educate the broader public about how important clean energy industries are to our competitive position in the global economy. He believes public officials do have an obligation to make their case to the American people on major legislation, and that’s what he’s doing.”I simply feel his words are damning enough to feel Kant just rolled over in his grave.