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A Government's Primary Goals

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  • 03-01-2012 2:11pm
    #1
    Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭


    What should a governments primary goals be?

    For example it could be to maximise total happiness of the population or it could be to minimise suffering?

    Minimising suffering possibly fits in with a more socialist ideology whereas maximising happiness possibly fits in with a more free market ideology.


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 3,956 ✭✭✭Doc Ruby


    "Serve the public trust"
    "Protect the innocent"
    "Uphold the law"
    "any attempt to arrest a senior OCP employee results in shutdown"


  • Registered Users Posts: 34,788 ✭✭✭✭krudler


    I dont agree with his Bart killing policy, but I do agree with his Selma killing policy...


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 34,567 ✭✭✭✭Biggins


    Keep us all in Jellybabies!


  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 9,689 Mod ✭✭✭✭stevenmu


    Minimising suffering possibly fits in with a more socialist ideology whereas maximising happiness possibly fits in with a more free market ideology.
    I'd actually say the reverse is true. Maximising everyone's happyness is a socialist goal. The government giving everybody everything they want is very much a socialist ideal, with the idea of a 'radiant future' being a core part of communism (or soviet communism at least).

    Minimising suffering would be more of a capitalist free market idea, with the government existing to provide the basic protections and requirements and people being responsible for their own happyness.


    Or there's the AH answer: The gubberment should make sure we all have enough cheese.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 22,559 ✭✭✭✭AnonoBoy


    One of the main roles in government is to remember that the letter 'N' appears twice in the word.

    Nothing rocks a nation to its core more than a plaque outside parliament proclaiming it to be 'GOVERMENT BUILDINGS'.


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  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    stevenmu wrote: »
    I'd actually say teh reverse is true. Maximising everyone's happyness is a socialist goal. The government giving everybody everything they want is very much a socialist ideal, with the idea of a 'radiant future' being a core part of communism (or soviet communism at least).

    Minimising suffering would be more of a capitalist free market idea, with the government existing to provide the basic protections and requirements and people being responsible for their own happyness.


    Or there's the AH answer: The gubberment should make sure we all have enough cheese.


    The way I see it in a socialist economy more people who are sick unemployed, disadvantaged etc get help however that stifles growth which would allow many to prosper. In a more free market economy it allows for people to prosper much more and to take charge of their life which would be more fulfilling.

    Say there are 1000 people. Would you prefer a situation where all of them are neutral when it comes to happiness, they live there life and get on with things but there is no real joy, excitement or enthusiam in their lives, they aren't suffering at all either.

    Or would you prefer for 900 people to be happy, fulfilled, over the moon with joy in their life and for 100 people to be miserable, in pain and get no pleasure from life.

    I think these sort of questions are very important and never discussed economically or politically.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,801 ✭✭✭✭Kojak


    Tax, Tax and more Tax


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    stevenmu wrote: »
    I'd actually say the reverse is true. Maximising everyone's happyness is a socialist goal. The government giving everybody everything they want is very much a socialist ideal, with the idea of a 'radiant future' being a core part of communism (or soviet communism at least).

    Minimising suffering would be more of a capitalist free market idea, with the government existing to provide the basic protections and requirements and people being responsible for their own happyness.


    Or there's the AH answer: The gubberment should make sure we all have enough cheese.

    It could possibly be socialists and capitalists goal to maximise happiness, they could just be wrong about what maximises happiness.


  • Registered Users Posts: 32,370 ✭✭✭✭Son Of A Vidic


    What should a governments primary goals be?

    Prioritising the interests of the nation and its people would be a nice first step. As opposed to their current obsession with practicing how to goose step.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,893 ✭✭✭amacca


    I would argue that a governments primary goals should be to stay the fcuk as far out of its citizens business as possible while still providing law and order, education, healthcare and protecting the environment (not just being busybodies for the sake of it)

    I dont want them to provide for my happiness or minimise suffering....just provide basic services and kindly fcuk the fcuk off tks v.much govt.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 246 ✭✭Joshua Jones


    A governments primary goal is to stay in government. The stuff in between elections is a nuisence for them tbh.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 34,567 ✭✭✭✭Biggins


    What should a governments primary goals be?
    To keep us voting till they get what they want?
    Here we go again? http://www.examiner.ie/ireland/government-to-revisit-failed-referendum-on-inquiries-178833.html


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    amacca wrote: »
    I would argue that a governments primary goals should be to stay the fcuk as far out of its citizens business as possible while still providing law and order, education, healthcare and protecting the environment (not just being busybodies for the sake of it)

    I dont want them to provide for my happiness or minimise suffering....just provide basic services and kindly fcuk the fcuk off tks v.much govt.

    How can you possibly have any goal before happiness of some sort?

    Presumably you want to be as happy as possible, if the government staying out of it's citizen's business makes them happiest then that would fit in with the maximising happiness goal. The governent has to think about the well being of the entire country not just one person who doesn't like interference.

    IMO socialists and capitalists have a similar inprecise goal of doing what's best for the people. They simply differ on what course of actions and policies makes people better off.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 1,644 ✭✭✭theg81der


    Efficient administration and redistribution of state income to provide services or goods which a civilised society deems necessary and which have positive externalities with the expectation of future benefit to the citizens of the state including those unable to care for themselves. And also as an efficient means of representation both nationally and internationally.


  • Registered Users Posts: 12,801 ✭✭✭✭Kojak


    Biggins wrote: »
    To keep us voting till they get what they want?
    Here we go again? http://www.examiner.ie/ireland/government-to-revisit-failed-referendum-on-inquiries-178833.html

    Jesus Christ, they can't take no for an answer.

    Pity they wouldn't have a referendum about their own pay (or the likes) - I'm sure they would be shítting it about the result they would get. :mad:


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 34,809 ✭✭✭✭smash


    What should a governments primary goals be?

    Tits or GTFO should be right up there.


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 4,013 ✭✭✭kincsem


    Create jobs while closing businesses. We should strive for 100% employment, all in the public service, funded by Germany (because they like to work, so let's not disappoint them.)


  • Registered Users Posts: 24,065 ✭✭✭✭ejmaztec


    It could possibly be socialists and capitalists goal to maximise happiness, they could just be wrong about what maximises happiness.

    As long as the leaders and their pals are happy, they don't give a sh1t about anyone else, no matter what political ideology they follow.:(


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    Hence I said "What should the goals?"


  • Registered Users Posts: 3,956 ✭✭✭Doc Ruby


    smash wrote: »
    Tits or GTFO should be right up there.
    Careful what you wish for.


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  • Registered Users Posts: 24,065 ✭✭✭✭ejmaztec


    Hence I said "What should the goals?"

    I'm just adding a bit to the festering pot of happiness.:(


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 12,456 ✭✭✭✭Mr Benevolent


    Biggins wrote: »
    To keep us voting till they get what they want?
    Here we go again? http://www.examiner.ie/ireland/government-to-revisit-failed-referendum-on-inquiries-178833.html

    I'm not voting yes to that. They're trying to con us into letting them investigate anything and anyone for any reason. Legalised corruption.


  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 35,451 Mod ✭✭✭✭pickarooney


    I'd say most people would be happier if they were suffering less so I don't really see what's to argue there.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    I'd say most people would be happier if they were suffering less so I don't really see what's to argue there.

    Choose one, happiness for most, suffering for some or neutrality for everyone.


  • Moderators, Arts Moderators Posts: 35,451 Mod ✭✭✭✭pickarooney


    Choose one, happiness for most, suffering for some or neutrality for everyone.

    What do you mean by neutrality? If a government can alleviate the suffering of its people they can't force them to be happy.


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,893 ✭✭✭amacca


    How can you possibly have any goal before happiness of some sort?

    survival is not necessarily happiness but it would be a goal many people put before happiness to give but one example

    Presumably you want to be as happy as possible, if the government staying out of it's citizen's business makes them happiest then that would fit in with the maximising happiness goal. The governent has to think about the well being of the entire country not just one person who doesn't like interference.

    happiness is an individual goal...its subjective the government should never be involved in the business of making its citizens happy.....it should do its job and provide basic services etc

    after all one person happiness is another's misery...its just an impossible task...how does the govt prioritize whose happiness to maximize.....how does a govt decide what will make the majority of its citizens happy..is it actually possible to make people truly happy on any sort of long term basis anyway?

    I for instance would expect the govt to provide me with perfect health a beautiful wife and kids, stimulating and always interesting work and even then I probably wouldn't be happy if everything was handed to me on a plate.....whatcha gonna do now govt?....you're supposed to make me happy you fookers!


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,512 ✭✭✭Ellis Dee


    theg81der wrote: »
    Efficient administration and redistribution of state income to provide services or goods which a civilised society deems necessary and which have positive externalities with the expectation of future benefit to the citizens of the state including those unable to care for themselves. And also as an efficient means of representation both nationally and internationally.


    That sums it up perfectly. :)

    Unfortunately, it ain't going to happen on this planet. :cool:


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    Choose one, happiness for most, suffering for some or neutrality for everyone.

    What do you mean by neutrality? If a government can alleviate the suffering of its people they can't force them to be happy.
    A government has an infinite possibility of actions to take, one possibility maximises the populations happiness. Maybe it's by staying out of people's lives and only providing essential services, who knows, but they can maximise happiness overall.

    Neutrality is neither happiness nor unhappiness.


  • Banned (with Prison Access) Posts: 3,144 ✭✭✭Scanlas The 2nd


    amacca wrote: »
    How can you possibly have any goal before happiness of some sort?

    survival is not necessarily happiness but it would be a goal many people put before happiness to give but one example

    Presumably you want to be as happy as possible, if the government staying out of it's citizen's business makes them happiest then that would fit in with the maximising happiness goal. The governent has to think about the well being of the entire country not just one person who doesn't like interference.

    happiness is an individual goal...its subjective the government should never be involved in the business of making its citizens happy.....it should do its job and provide basic services etc

    after all one person happiness is another's misery...its just an impossible task...how does the govt prioritize whose happiness to maximize.....how does a govt decide what will make the majority of its citizens happy..is it actually possible to make people truly happy on any sort of long term basis anyway?

    I for instance would expect the govt to provide me with perfect health a beautiful wife and kids, stimulating and always interesting work and even then I probably wouldn't be happy if everything was handed to me on a plate.....whatcha gonna do now govt?....you're supposed to make me happy you fookers!

    Well if the government stays out of your life that would appear to make you happier. If the government decided to introduce the death penalty do farting that would make people unhappy, if the government decides to lower politicians wages that could make people happier.

    If people's survival wasn't prioritised that would make people unhappy, so by taking care of survival you are taking care of the primary goal of happiness.


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  • Closed Accounts Posts: 11,299 ✭✭✭✭later12


    A Government's primary goal ought to be to increase or maintain welfare.

    It can do this by increasing or maintaining liberty and equality.

    Equality and liberty are essentially mutually exclusive. You cannot be totally at liberty if you are totally equal to everyone else; you cannot be totally equal to everyone else and be your own man.

    The question of how best to reconcile liberty with equality is a question that has dogged human kind since the French Revolution. In the end, it all comes down to a matter of personal philosophy.

    The question of what exactly a government's philosophy should be is, therefore, impossible to answer to everyone's satisfaction.

    Get out while you still can.


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