The grasshopper paused. He'd never spoken to ants before, but he prided himself on his tolerance, so he answered. "Eh, I'm on my way down to Farmer Baumeister's wheat field for lunch. I've been working all morning making a new fiddle and I'm famished."
"Where are your other grasshoppers?" the ants wanted to know.
The grasshopper looked around. "What do you mean?" he asked. The ants said, "We're ants. We never do anything alone. We work on everything together,"
"Eh," the grasshopper said. "There are no other grasshoppers, I'm the only grasshopper here and I'm the only grasshopper I need. I'm quite capable of taking care of myself all by myself, thank you." "Well," the ants said, "good luck with that."
"I make my own luck." boasted the grasshopper. "I am responsible for my own success and I am responsible for my own failure, so I work hard to see that I succeed."
"We have a much better system," the ants said. "We call it collectivism. Everyone works for the common good, so that everyone succeeds."
The grasshopper scratched his ear with his hind leg. "How can that be?" he said. "Don't some ants want to succeed more than others?"
"We don't allow that," said the ants. "In our system, we all sink or swim together. It's all for one and one for all. You see, we care about each other, so individualism is - shall we say 'discouraged?' We like to refer to it as a 'classless society.'"
"But," the grasshopper frowned, "Surely some ants work harder than others. Don't they deserve a larger share of the anthill's wealth?"
"Certainly not," the ants answered. "That would be unfair. As ants , it is our responsibility to see that all ants are treated equally. We call it 'leveling the playing field.'"
"But how do you assure that everyone is treated equally?" the grasshopper wanted to know. "Ah," the ants said, "we have a system called liberalism that 'redistributes' food from ants that work harder to those that work less. Everyone shares equally in the wealth of the anthill, regardless of how much one has contributed. We call it 'social justice.'"
"So," the grasshopper mused, "I could live quite well by doing very little - or nothing at all?"
"Precisely," said the ants. "We have a saying: 'From each according to his ability, to each according to his need.' We call it 'paying one's fair share.'"
The grasshopper thought for a few moments. He looked down the road at Farmer Baumeister's wheat field shimmering in the noonday sun in the distance. He thought of his freedom to do whatever he wanted and to come and go as he pleased. He thought about the feeling of satisfaction he had when he had accomplished something on his own – with no help. Then he thought about the sense of security offered by a community in which every member was concerned for the welfare of every other member.
"Eh," the grasshopper said, "how do I get in on this deal?" "Easy," the ants said. "Just come into the anthill with us and we'll introduce you to the queen." As soon as the grasshopper entered the anthill, the ants swarmed all over him and devoured him alive.
G. E. Kruckeberg (2013-04-22). History and Common Sense . . Kindle Edition.
The above fable illustrates the preponderant reason wishful thinkers are incapable of recognizing facts – They are confirmed liars. "If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan. If you like your doctor, you can keep your doctor. Period!"
Wishful thinkers see lies not as infractions of the truth but as tools to attain a goal. The story of George Washington and the cherry tree was a lie invented by Bishop Wright to embellish a sermon on honesty. Ironic.
But irony is beyond the intellectual reach of wishful thinkers.