In your opinion has that always been the case? I.e., were the Russian serfs of the 14th century poor because of their "stupid decisions"?
Does this comment apply to the USA only, or to every place on earth?
I'm thinking primarily of the USA, as that's where I am, although I would extend it to any country that upholds an individuals right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness. And again, as I said, I recognise that there are exceptions to my line of thinking - I have and will continue to participate in helping people who are going through extreme and unavoidable circumstances.
My core belief, through my personal experience, is that the individual is responsible for the outcome of their lives. I have a right to my life, my liberty, the property that I own, and the pursuit of happiness in my life. I do not have a right to happiness itself, only the pursuit of it. That's important. I don't have a right to a car, or internet, or a TV, or even a house. I have a right to pursue those things, but I have no right to automatically have them, and I have absolutely no right to make another person hand over their property so that I can advance that pursuit, or because I didn't do whatever it took to make and keep myself stable even when faced with unexpected circumstances. That's theft, any way you cut it, and it makes no difference to me if it's done in person at gunpoint or with the force of the federal governmant.