Library Larry loved his local library. So much so that when he learned that it had to cut its budget significantly for the next year he remarked, "I would gladly pay a few dollars more on my property taxes to keep that from happening."
"I wouldn't," replied Conservative Carl.
"But the community needs the library!" Larry protested.
"Why?" Carl asked. "You have books and the Internet at home. You can read and research from there. Why should I have to pay for a library you don't actually need simply because you have made the value judgment that it's necessary? I am not expected to pay for your other forms of entertainment. Why should I pay for your use of the library?"
Library Larry muttered that Carl was a fascist and stormed off.
This may or may not be an oversimplification. Yet libraries, like the print media, are fast becoming obsolete. But perhaps more importantly, why should Library Larry be seen as such a hero (he will be for some who read this) for being willing to force his neighbors to spend their money on what he likes? It's arrogance, pure and simple. Yet that attitude is the basis for an awful lot of public spending.
All democracy ultimately means is that fifty percent of the population plus one person can force everyone else to do what they want. That is not a rationale for good public policy or public spending. But it can and will create jealousies which, in the long run, will rent asunder the body politic.