This column by John Hood deserves a full read. He writes of an increasingly common theme of asserted moral superiority from those who send him hate mail. He writes of the negative effects on public debate from allowing “claims of moral superiority [to] displace actual, rational argumentation.”

He then writes:

To all my left-of-center readers: It may come as a shock to you, but conservatives and libertarians will never recognize your political philosophy as morally superior. You may persuade us to accept a particular claim of yours, or drop a particular claim of ours. But we will never see European-style social democracy as morally superior to American-style market democracy, because it most certainly is not.

By way of illustration, let us examine the claims of superiority toward issues affecting the poor that come from a local movement of leftists directly calling themselves “moral.”

I and my colleagues have written a great deal about issues affecting the poor. It would violate the spirit of a blog post to list them all. I invite those interested to read this newsletter entitled “Effectively fighting poverty in North Carolina,” especially the final section.

About the “moral” movement, however, their talk of “caring for the poor” seems to be just “euphemism for growing government, the movement’s true alpha and omega.”

As I wrote:

With respect to the poor, the movement, among other things:

Hearkening back to this state’s motto, it’s simply not enough to be satisfied with supporting policies that seem beneficial to the poor but aren’t. Unless all one wishes is a moral semblance.