Since the publication of William Voegeli's book, Never Enough a few conservatives have signed on to the idea that the welfare state is ineradicable. They propose that we 'accept reality', compromise, and call a truce with Progressives (or at least moderates). They suggest, in essence, that we lie back and enjoy it, hoping for at least a little petroleum jelly to ease the pain.
What they are suggesting is not a truce but a suicide pact.
Every aspect of the welfare state is immoral, impractical, and unconstitutional, and therefore completely illegitimate. It violates everyone's rights, including the recipients, to steal from Peter to pay Paul. Calling it "charity" or "good citizenship" or any other pleasant sounding description only adds insult to injury.
It's hardly a metaphysical given that welfare programs - along with every other Progressive policy - can not be eliminated. Progressives are influential - because of their outsized representation in education and the media - but they still number only about 20% of the population.
Persuade the other 50%+ not yet clear on the issue, those who don't yet realize how destructive to their own long-term interests the welfare state is, and we'll have won the intellectual battle, and therefore avoided any necessity for a physical one.
Now is no time to preemptively surrender. Progressives are on the ropes. Keep up the blows for another 10 years and this country might actually survive in some recognizable form.
Alternatively, accept an Obama-like return to America's '1967 borders' as the best you can do and you have agreed to jump off the cliff into a full European social democracy. Become Denmark circa 1990? No thanks. Even the Danes have backed away from that precipice. That road leads to Spain circa 2010.
The welfare state can not be saved by compromise, nor should it. Whether it will fade or consume us, time will tell. One thing is for sure; we should never cease to oppose it with vigor.