Which promotes greater personal responsibility, the free market or the welfare state?
The free market promotes greater personal responsibility than the welfare state, by a landslide, to say the least. In fact, the welfare state exemplifies the exact opposite of promoting personal responsibility by using coercion as means by which they steal from working party A, to support party B. What this is really teaching people is that they don’t need to be worried about themselves, or their families, because they can depend on the government. They need not look for a job, because they have comfortably large checks coming in to feed and clothe their children with; checks that were filled with money stolen from the people actually working to earn a living. (Reward the dependent citizens, punish the independents workers.) The free market, on the other hand, not only promotes personal responsibility, but it requires it. If one can not keep up with their finances, supply and demand, marketing, etc. then they can not survive. One must be disciplined and hard working to become a top competitor; no state granted monopolies here.