Letter: Libertarian parody

Published: 6/26/2019 12:01:18 AM

I can never tell if Archie Richards’s letters are meant to be taken at face value, or if he’s creating a persona of an extreme libertarian whom he is trying to parody or lampoon. Stephen Colbert adopted this comical approach on his pre-Late Show program where he pretended to be a right-wing extremist with views so off-kilter the persona was downright hilarious.

Richards’s letter of June 21 is so loaded with illogical blanket statements and sweeping unsubstantiated generalizations that I’m not sure how to take it. To wit: “Most people believe that private citizens aren’t altruistic enough to take care of the needy” (Well, maybe. I don’t know most people). “Many television shows have portrayed wealthy businessmen as bad guys” (name five shows). “The bad guys are the government and its nefarious partners, unions” (Um, how does this collusion work exactly?). “Government raises tax revenue by force and pays it out to some groups but not to others” (Who gets it? Who doesn’t?). “If government were much reduced, people would take responsibility for their own actions” (How specifically does this dynamic play out?). “If government stopped all welfare, the feeling that we’re all in this together would take hold . . . and the underclass would flourish” (Um...What?).

Well, you get the idea. However, I’m going to give Richards the benefit of the doubt and assume his letter is meant to entertain us, not convert us.



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