Life without socks would be… "undignified," but no one recommends government provision or even sock vouchers. Relative to income, socks are sufficiently cheap. There is some inequality of socks, but it seems that just about everybody — even the poor — "has enough." We don’t even force people to buy socks for their kids.
Might there come a time when health care and education fall under the same rubric?
Yes, I know that, due to rising labor costs, health care and education might continue to eat up an increasing percentage of national income. But still, can’t "rich enough" people make do? Living in Aspen might cost half your income, but if you’re a multi-millionaire no one weeps for you.
Of course today’s poor aren’t rich enough for us to remove government aid. But when will the splendid era of libertarian freedom be possible? Today’s poor are much richer than the poor fifty years ago, and the poor of the future are likely to be richer yet. Won’t the welfare state, at some point, simply become unnecessary?
Readers, please tell me in the comments when the time will come for dismantling the welfare state. Will you sign your name to a pledge:
"I am a left-winger, but only until 2078"?
More elegant would be:
"I’m a 2096 libertarian."
Social democracy is but a mere transitional strategy.
If this were 1890, what Year of Libertarian Freedom would you have named?