07 February 2010
The Dishes Won't Wash Themselves
I think this will be my new example as to why the socialism, that great system of government that shares misery equally, will never work.
The dishes won't wash themselves.
Special thanks goes to my friend Jacquie for the inspiration.
As the head of my house, I could command my wife (who is, by all accounts, my equal in all things marital), to wash the dishes, but I'd be punished for it. And besides, as equals we are far too busy planning our economy to do something as simple as cleaning dishes.
I could order my child (Little Workshop) to do the dishes, but he could very easily drop them. Especially since he's only four months old. Let's say Little Workshop (LW) is old enough to put dishes away. We'll make LW 18 for simplicity.
Ordering LW to do the dishes could likely result in him breaking dishes, or doing a half-assed job on cleaning them. And why not? If I were to punish LW for doing a half-assed job, he could simply take his dish-washing skills and leave.
Perhaps I should pay LW to do the dishes! But, that borders dangerously close to capitalism, so we'll add some caveats. LW will get paid to do the dishes, but I'll put a limit on the amount of money he is allowed to make from washing the dishes. Plus, he must do the dishes in precisely the right way, or he'll suffer the consequences and won't get paid. Oh, wait, this means that LW takes his skills and leaves . . . .
Okay, fine! Leave! I'll hire Eduardo to do the dishes. Of course, Eduardo doesn't have any actual skill doing the dishes, so he doesn't use hot water. Or soap. And he puts them away all wrong. But everyone with LW's skill won't come to my house, so I guess I'll have to live with half-clean dishes that may or may not be in the cupboard.
Now, extrapolate the dishwashing scenario to something important. Like, say, surgery. Do you really want a doctor operating on you who is operating on you because the government tells him "Do this or you'll be arrested?" Or do you want a doctor who isn't skilled, because the skilled doctors left to pursue other avenues of employment?
Which is worse: Using an unskilled doctor, or forcing one to perform under the threat of punishment?