The Monogamous Family in the Social Welfare State

1. Postmodernist Polyamorous State

In between the monogamous and polyamorous cultures lies the welfare state and its operational bureaucracy.1) The question is how this state bureaucracy can serve these two very different cultures. State-controlled programs today in developed countries, almost universally, are polyamorous-friendly and monogamy-hostile. This is unjust from every perspective of political analysis, because those who choose monogamy are, generally, the most effective, the cheapest, and the safest in raising the next generation.

This polyamorous-friendly, monogamy-hostile culture is unjust because it is a universal, inalienable right of parents to raise their children as they see fit, including raising them in their culture.

Further, the social welfare state asks the monogamous to support the polyamorous, and uses the universal safety net insurance scheme (or taxes) to ensure that the monogamous pay more to support those who choose the polyamory culture. This is plainly unjust, but even more so because the monogamous do not have their own culture-friendly programs and their own children are the target of the culture of polyamory’s scheme. Justice will increase and tensions decrease when that culture of polyamory begins to pay its own costs.

2. How to Achieve Neutrality

One way to progress in this direction and to make the behavioral bureaucracy serve both cultures is to give all parents, parents of both cultures, control over the program money set aside for their children. That is giving parents vouchers, in one form or another, for all three program areas.

The social welfare safety net will still be in place, but the parents (be they monogamous or polyamorous) will choose who holds the net in place for their children.

This requires a huge political effort on the part of the monogamy culture. It will require diverting the flow of money from the special interest groups (organized doctors, teachers, schools) and instead directing the voucher money (cost per child served) to the parent— who can then choose the individual doctor, teacher, or school they want. The professionals will still receive the same amount of money, but instead of serving a bureaucracy, they will be cooperating with the parents. Such a change is a big one in the political order, and the culture of monogamy must harness itself to the task.

2.1 Role of Men

By its very make-up, the culture of monogamy organizes itself bottom-up, not top-down in social (and thus political) matters. It solves its social problems by forming its own private “platoons.” And in the protection of the family, men have the special role of being the primary protector. Thus, in this political competition for peaceful coexistence, the male needs to especially engage the increasingly hostile state and the polygamy culture whenever it “raids” the territory of his family’s domain.

Every male in the monogamy culture, and especially every father, will find his way to be engaged in this protection of his children, and, given what is at stake, other men and women of the culture of monogamy will increasingly expect this of every man.

Monogamous man will be expected to fight for control over is what is his and his family’s just due, what his taxes fund, and what he can use in raising his children: control over the three big programs of childhood education, sex education, and adolescent health programs, so that they can be carried out in a way that supports the norms of the culture of monogamy. In this rearrangement, parents of the culture of polyamory have the same control to do as they wish for their children.

In this way, both cultures can live together with much greater ease and peace.

Now, monogamous families are tasked with gathering, planning, and exhorting each other, and drawing to their side not only monogamous men but the fathers of good will in the culture of polyamory, for their children will also benefit from their having control over the big three programs.

1) This entry draws heavily from Culture Clash: Sexual Monogamy vs. Polyandry.