1. "If you have always believed that everyone should play by the same rules and be judged by the same standards, that would have gotten you labeled a radical 60 years ago, a liberal 30 years ago and a racist today."
Oh, how the political winds have changed in America. While millions of brave Americans once marched for equality, that term has seemed to lose its luster over the years. Today, radical liberals would rather insist that we "check our privilege" than actually fight for a more just society.
2. "It is amazing that people who think we cannot afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, and medication somehow think that we can afford to pay for doctors, hospitals, medication and a government bureaucracy to administer it."
This quote from his 1980 book Knowledge and Decisions perfectly articulates the lunacy of universal health care. Big spenders always speak of their desire to attack "unaffordability" and make certain amenities more accessible for more people. However, their inability to understand economic repercussions can be maddening.
3. "The biggest and most deadly 'tax' rate on the poor comes from a loss of various welfare state benefits—food stamps, housing subsidies and the like—if their income goes up."
Dr. Sowell's statement on welfare encapsulates the perverse incentives these kinds of programs create. While liberals and Democrats may claim that the monstrous programs that they have created keep impoverished Americans from starvation, the truth is that so many of these same programs create a culture of dependency, thereby punishing the same people these programs are supposed to help.
4. "The real minimum wage is zero."
As much as big government politicians may like to avoid economic cause and effect, we all know that this is not possible. Governments can make the minimum wage as artificially high as they wish, but they can never prohibit employers from refusing to hire because of such wage floors.
5. "Elections should be held on April 16th—the day after we pay our income taxes. That is one of the few things that might discourage politicians from being big spenders."
Liberal Democrats love raising taxes, but many of them also love being career politicians. We hear so often of political strategies used by those in Washington in order to both expand the size of government and raise taxes while winning re-election. Perhaps if we hold elections when tax hikes are fresh, accountability for such actions will increase.
6. "The black family survived centuries of slavery and generations of Jim Crow, but it has disintegrated in the wake of the liberals' expansion of the welfare state."
This controversial quote by Sowell strikes right at the heart of the disparate impacts which big government programs have had on Americans who are poor and of minority status. Rather than lending a helping hand to black Americans, it seems too often that these government interventions have trapped these historically disadvantaged groups in poverty.
7. "Helping those who have been struck by unforeseeable misfortunes is fundamentally different from making dependency a way of life."
As a lover of liberty, Sowell understands the difference between compassion and government coercion. While private charity is effective more often than not, government is a cold arbiter which simply hands out assistance without putting faces to names, while entrenching recipients in a culture of dependency. While many liberals claim this is the definition of "help," Sowell knows better.
8. "The most fundamental fact about the ideas of the political left is that they do not work. Therefore we should not be surprised to find the left concentrated in institutions where ideas do not have to work in order to survive."
Why is it that we see so many liberals in Hollywood and academia? Perhaps it is because in these environments, their inhabitants need not provide any substantive reasoning for their ideologies. While laissez-faire economics and personal liberty have worked the best in practical use, it has not prevented so many in these select, isolated industries from philosophizing to the contrary.
9. "The next time some academics tell you how important diversity is, ask how many Republicans there are in their sociology department."
Liberals and Democrats so often pride themselves on being promoters of diversity and inclusion. However, when their ideas are challenged, they quickly turn this idea on its head. Perhaps it is that these "inclusive" liberals support tolerance only when it is within their own circles.
10. "The more people who are dependent on government handouts, the more votes the left can depend on for an ever-expanding welfare state."
At the end of the day, we only must examine the incentives for certain expansions of government. While it is easy to decry the Reagan-era "welfare queen" who is living off of government money, we must realize that the state has created an environment where nearly everyone is on some sort of government program, and is therefore indebted to those who have given them such benefits.