Free Markets, Free People

Poor Joe …

Michael Moore has a post on his blog from someone named John Gray entitled, “A Day In The Life Of Joe Middle-Class Republican” in which Gray attempts to make the point that all good things we enjoy in life flow from government and liberals. It begins like this:

Joe gets up at 6:00am to prepare his morning coffee. He fills his pot full of good clean drinking water because some liberal fought for minimum water quality standards. He takes his daily medication with his first swallow of coffee. His medications are safe to take because some liberal fought to insure their safety and work as advertised.

All but $10.00 of his medications are paid for by his employers medical plan because some liberal union workers fought their employers for paid medical insurance, now Joe gets it too. He prepares his morning breakfast, bacon and eggs this day. Joe’s bacon is safe to eat because some liberal fought for laws to regulate the meat packing industry.

And so on. Gil Guillory answers Gray’s assertions in a comment at the Mises blog:

Joe gets up at 6:00am to prepare his morning coffee. He makes it with a machine he could not possibly have made himself. He does not know where it was made, or how it works, and may not care. He does not know the people that planted, cultivated, harvested, dried, roasted, packaged, freighted, warehoused, distributed, marketed, or retailed his coffee, and may not care. The company that insures the manufacturer of the coffee machine required that it meet certain safety guidelines, as established by the private insurance-company-funded Underwriters Laboratory. Joe has seen the UL mark, but is not really sure what it’s for or how it protects him. He doesn’t clearly understand why greedy businessmen might be interested in a safe product. All of this was made possible by libertarians who fought for and won the legal right to free trade.

He fills his pot full of good clean drinking water which he bought from Ozarka, because the local government monopoly of water supply bears the comforting designation of “accepted” and also tastes funny.

Sam Bostap also answers the post:

Joe gets up at 6 a.m. and fills his coffeepot with bottled water because he knows that the municipal water system supplies water that occasionally has e coli and other natural organisms that will make him ill–after all his mother died from drinking water that was polluted by sewage after a heavy rain. Joe tried to sue, but was told that the city had sovereign immunity from such suits as a result of state law. If the water he pours from the bottle he bought at Safeway is polluted, he knows he can sue the manufacturer and collect big, so he feels pretty sure that it’s clean.

Joe grinds his coffee beans carefully because they’re very expensive as a result of the U.S. government-enforced international coffee cartel that exists to protect the jobs of coffee importers–heavy campaign contributers to Congress. He’s also careful about how much sugar he puts in his coffee because it costs seven times the world price of sugar as a result of the U.S. government imposed import restrictions on sugar to protect the domestic sugar beet and sugar cane industry.

I don’t think you’d have to guess very hard to know who I think wins this little battle of the Joes. But I don’t think all the bases have been covered in the two parodies of Gray’s original post.

Your additions to the reasons for Joe’s quality of life are solicited.


22 Responses to Poor Joe …

  • And I’m sure the bozo “liberal” that wrote the first version it isn’t aware that the term “liberal” used to be a good thing before they hijacked the term.
    And the term “democracy” wasn’t always viewed positively because our fathers and grandfathers understood “democracy” can be explained quite adequately with the simple scenario of three wolves and 2 sheep voting on lunch.

  • All but $10.00 of his medications are paid for by his employers medical plan because some liberal union workers fought their employers for paid medical insurance ‘they can just make money apear out of nowhere’.

  • The push-pull compromises allowed under our system innoculate us from the doctrinal purity that would soon make us extinct.

  • At 6:00 a.m., Joe gets up for work.

    John the liberal gets up at 11:00 a.m., because he has no need for a job. He fills his coffee pot with clean municipal water paid for by working Joe’s tax money.

    At around 1:00 p.m. John goes to his mailbox to pick up his disability check paid for by working Joe’s contributions to social security, because one can’t be expected to do desk work with a sprained ankle.

    At 3:00 p.m. John the liberal goes to the pharmacy to pick up his safe medications. John is on Medicaid, so his medications are paid for with working Joe’s tax money. These medications are safe because some other poor bastards had their kidneys fail on the previous two versions, causing the company to do more R & D, independent of any “liberal” contribution.

    While he’s out, John goes to the store to pick up some bacon and eggs for dinner. He “pays” for these items with food stamps, which are funded by working Joe’s tax money.

    After dinner, John thinks about visiting his five illegitimate children, but thinks better of it. He’s six months behind on child support payments, and wouldn’t want to make a scene. Better to let social services continue to make up the difference, funded by working Joe’s tax money.

    At 6:00 p.m., working Joe returns home from work, having spent five hours of his working day paying for John the liberal’s day.

    • You forgot one:

      At 3:45, John reported Joe to the White House Informer Mailbox because Joe dared to post his disagreement with Obamacare on the web.

      • You’re right. And I forgot yet another one:

        At 8:00 p.m. John sits down to write a letter to his local Democratic Congressman to complain that his disability check is insufficient, as it barely pays for his rent, car, cable, video games, and wireless internet. He knows how to write this letter because he attended schools paid for by working Joe’s property taxes. His Congressman assures him that his outrage is shared. No one in America should go without cable.

        • At 9:00, Joe says goodnight to his youngest daughter. He can’t take her out of the failing school because liberals fought against school vouchers, but at least she’s learning that Heather Has Two Mommies and other vital educational items. Joe’s other daughter is only 16, but was able to get an abortion and not tell him about it since liberals fought for that as well. It’s probably for the best anyway, if there was a little child around the house the homosexual liberals in the neighborhood would probably spread rumors that Joe’s wife was pretending to be the child’s mother for some reason.

  • So liberal union worker fought for paid medical insurance to get around the WWII wage caps from another liberal FDR ?

  • At 6:00, Joe the Conservative woke up and went to his job. Joe earned $250,000 a year, which made him “rich”. Because Joe went to school and worked hard to succeed in his field, Joe’s reward was to be taxed more and more in order to help everyone else. It goes without saying that Joe was white, and therefore a racist who wanted to see Obama killed.

  • Can we be sure that “someone named John Gray” is not really the so-called Professor from Maine?

  • Here’s one I did as a response to this back in 2005:
    Larry the liberal gets out of bed at noon in the apartment paid for by his
    dad Joe, he is in his 8th year at college.  Enjoying all the benefits of
    modern technology such as skateboards, skis, electric guitars, telephones,
    inexpensive electrical appliances, plentiful water and power he rarely
    thinks that most if not all of these benefits were the result of efforts of
    entrepreneurs and businessmen who risked financial ruin.

    He checks his email with a low priced computer and shareware that he never
    paid for, and since he has time he downloads some MP3s for free.

    On a normal day,  he would then call his drug dealer for an .oz of
    pot and an 8 ball of coke to offset the boredom of having nothing to do but watch TV.
    But today is a big day.  He has to drive his girlfriend, Sunshine, to the women’s clinic for an abortion because he wasn’t going to be bothered with
    using a condom.  Too bad that she will have to pay the $200 since he spent
    his money on drugs. “Damned conservatives!” he thinks , “no respect for the rights of
    women, this should be free”.  He drives to the poor black or Hispanic
    neighborhood plagued with crime fueled by his and his friends illegal drug
    purchases and curses the conservative white men who are keeping the brothers

    Later, Larry gets together with his friends and discuss how the whole military
    industrial complex is just a machine for white men to take the world’s
    resources.  They decide to exercise their right to free speech, which was
    paid for by the blood of his countrymen, and he vows to never serve in the
    military.  He rails against hunters, giving some of his fathers money to
    Greenpeace to protect the environment and stop hunting.  Meanwhile, his
    father was contributing to Ducks Unlimited which has conserved more than 9.4
    million acres of wetland habitat and raised over $1.6 Billion, more than any
    other environmental or conservation group.

    After the protest where he threw rocks and bottles at police officers who
    were there to maintain order and protect the protesters, Larry is arrested.
    Calling his Dad Joe for bail, once again he is out on the street, a
    non-productive member of society, the  first to criticize, and the last to contribute or

  • Can we be sure that “someone named John Gray” is not really the so-called Professor from Maine?

    John Erb??

    • Who is John Erb
      and why hasn’t he picked up this collection of pale pastel shirts that he left to be startched and pressed?

  • The fallacies, unfounded assumptions, and outright fabrications (not to mention the spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors) almost make the piece self-refuting.

    • Are you saying liberals probably didn’t install my water system and almost certainly aren’t in charge of it!?????
      More to the point, are we saying conservatives favor trichinosis, poor quality water and medication that will possibly poison them?
      Or are we saying perhaps conservatives are too stupid, ill informed or uncaring about their own well being (let along John’s or the average Liberal’s) to actually DO anything about trichina, water quality or bad medication without having their hands held by a circle of  kumbaya singing liberals, fighting greed, corruption and disease by singing songs of protest and being nice to others?
      Are we seriously positing that most good things in the country have only sprung forth as a result of  “liberal” activism?  (one might snidely ask were they asleep then, from the period of our nations early colonies until 1861? and why did it take them so long to correct our ‘peculiar institution’, but that would be evil of one to do…).

      • One need only look as far as Utah to prove your assertion true. Utah is notoriously conservative and has been for a long time. The Democratic party’s unofficial slogan here is “Democrats: NOT The Spawn Of Satan.” And yet Utah still has municipal water systems, and health departments, and statist public schools administered by unionized nutjobs more concerned with preening their own careers than with those meddling kids, and all the general trappings of modern “liberalism.”

  • Joe wakes up in the morning, goes to his coffee pot as usual, then sees a bunch of you douchebags trying to make him as an example of your myopic, facile worldviews.
    Frustrated, Joe then grabs a kitchen knife and stabs all of you idiots in the gut.
    Satisfied in leaving your rotting corpses in a pool of blood, Joe is left to enjoy his coffee.
    The End.

    • Thank God. That will save us from the slow, merciless death your health care monstrosity is going to bring us.

    • Pogue
      Thanks for my morning laugh…and the coffee spew on my monitor!  You liberal whackjob, you’re trying to destroy my conservative productivity and make me dependent on the welfare state through destruction of my hardware!  Next you’ll come to my office and throw tiny wooden shoes into the spaces between the keys on my keyboard!

  • …and for a brief moment, as Joe consumes his coffee, he almost thinks there might have been a better way for him to get safe municipal water and $10 medications than to have government regulate it. Almost.

    Joe goes to his job, where he finds that his boss is being investigated by some government agency or other for failing to dot his I’s and cross his T’s on the 100 pages of paperwork he had to prepare in order to prove to the government that he really does do what he does. And he almost thinks that perhaps all this intervention was not really necessary, that the vast majority of people are honest and go about their business honorably and would do it much better without all this government interference. Almost.

    Joe breaks half a dozen laws by flicking his cigarette butt out his window. He breaks more laws by driving through at the post office to mail a letter on the way to his hunting trip. He made a wooden toy with one plastic part and, without testing it for lead and phthalates, foolishly donated it to the school fundraising raffle, breaking more laws. And he’s only vaguely aware of breaking all these laws, but if he were, he might almost think the American people don’t really need all these laws. Almost.

  • Perhaps I was unclear – I was refering to the piece from Mr. Moore’s site, i.e. the subject of this post.  My only excuse is that I’m tired, I visited all 57 states last week.

  • He knows how to write this letter because he attended schools paid for by working Joe’s property taxes.

    Of course, being a product of the public schools, his letter is full of grammatical and punctuation errors. And being a product of the school indoctrination that fails to teach critical thinking, his letter is rather incoherent and assumes there is, in fact, a Santa Claus.