Every chance 

As I prepare to take on the even more important role of citizen, know that I will be there with you every step of the way to ensure that this country forever strives to live up to the incredible promise of our founding — that all of us are created equal, and all of us deserve every chance to live out our dreams.

So says the soon to be former President from the article Obama: I won’t leave on January 20th from the Washington Examiner.

No, please go. That is my dream. You can grant it. I deserve every chance to see that happen, do I not? If it is Trump’s dream to become president, wouldn’t it seem Obama’s been putting effort into hindering that? If men’s dreams are important to him, it’s obvious some dreams are more important than others. How Animal Farm of him. But the left often takes literature meant as a warning of what not to do as an instruction manual.

All of us are created equal, but from that point on we don’t remain equal. As he’s someone who advocates unequalness in the womb, e.g. abortion, I’m sure he realizes that. We rise and fall based on our efforts, and the efforts invested into us by our parents and others. Before God, when we’re created we’re equal, we started from nothing, and to nothing we will return, but the middle part is where the fun is. We learn skills and trades,  find interests and hobbies, and rise as high as our efforts will carry us.

My problem with the president’s words is “..all of us deserve every chance to live out our dreams.”

Note that the phrase contains nothing about effort. Deserve denotes a right, but there are no rights that come at the expense of others. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happyness. Pursuit, not happyness itself. Housing, food, water, work. Things people need to live aren’t enumerated. Why? Because the government can try to protect the first three without burdening others. It could be said that if people were perfectly honorable, it could protect them without cost. Rather, everything else requires the use of force, even if everyone behaved honorably. 

I very much doubt the founders would agree with this characterization of their will. It is the pursuit of happyness, not happyness itself. Happyness is the goal, but not a thing that can be given by others. At best, they can as much as possible stay out of the way. This is why the rule of law and property rights are important. What we should have as Americans is the opertunity to achieve our dreams. Do we deserve it? Probably not. 

And living out our dreams? If we can achieve it, but if you are given “the chance to live out your dreams,” unlike achieving it outright, that can only be done by taking away from the ability of others to achieve their dreams. In trade, you get something you value in exchange for something the other values. Both parties have something they want more than what they previously had. There is no reason I’d value your happyness enough to give you some of mine, but a new grill in exchange for a few hours of labor? That is something where we both benefit, and both gain in happyness.

We live in a world where we trade our abilities for our desires. The president doesn’t really get it. He discounts things like effort because saying if you work really hard, maybe your children will live a good life just isn’t popular. But going by his inclinations, your children would never have a good life. We must produce more than we consume to live better. If you burn all the candles without putting in the effort to make more, the end is only darkness.

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