Dissident Soviet-era thinker Milovan Djilas coined the term ‘The New Class’ to describe the people who actually ran the Soviet Union: Not workers or capitalists or proletarians, but managers, bureaucrats, technocrats, and assorted hangers-on. This group, Djilas wrote, had assumed the power that mattered in the ‘workers paradise,’ and transformed itself into a new kind of aristocracy, even while pretending, ever less convincingly, to do so in the name of the workers. Capitalists own capital, workers own their labor, but what the New Class owned was political control over other peoples capital and labor.

Makes the point wonderfully. I always wonder when told that government must solve every perceived injustice: Who Decides?

Who decides how much wealth is too much? Who decides how much regulation is too much? Who decides when my need trumps your property? Who decides how the VA system should be organized? Who decides what services and drugs are mandated in the National Health Scheme?

What we end up creating is that class of opportunists who set themselves out to be the deciders and the organizers that will wisely answer these questions and divide the spoils. We send money to Washington, D.C. and/or our state capitols, where it does the least good – except for those who skim off their take before sending the remains back to the interest groups that best play the game. Are problems being solved? Clearly, they are not.

Local charity and initiative will always be more efficient and effective than the current arrangement.

via Bled dry by the New Class: Column.