Wednesday, October 10, 2007

An Interview with Nanny State author David Harsanyi

Bill Steigerwald has the interview with Harsanyi at Townhall.
Q: What’s “Nanny State” about?

A: It’s about the difference between coercing someone to do the right thing and convincing them to do the right thing. In the Nanny State, we coerce them -- or the government does, at least. All these intrusions -- what we eat, what we smoke, what we watch -- one by one they don’t seem like they are much. But when you bundle them together, you have a movement, and a movement that undermines our freedoms. That’s what the book’s about. ...

Q: Who’s responsible for this Nanny State -- liberals, conservatives, Jane Fonda, Jerry Falwell?

A: All of the above. I would say that the left typically believes that government can make us better people and protect us from all the vagaries of life. On the right, at least rhetorically, we hear a lot about individual freedom. But in the past few years, and maybe it’s compassionate conservatism, we see the Republican Party coddling adults as well and buying into the Nanny State. It’s still not as bad as the liberals, but bad enough. But there are many different kinds of people involved in the Nanny State and it’s driven by all kinds of concerns -- hyper-risk-aversion and political correctness are also part of it. It’s not like you can pin it down to one or two types of people. It’s a bunch of people.
Go read the interview.

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