“Self-reliance” is now a pejorative? Nice to have that clarified. And San Francisco, a city that registers more dogs than it has kids enrolled in its schools and in which adults are perforce the children they never bothered having, seems as good a place as any to make it official. In less enlightened times, “self-reliance” was the great animating principle of the American experiment. By the standards of the day, George III was one of the most benign, caring rulers on earth: You were his mewling charges, and he was the regal babysitter. Then a bunch of settlers in small towns clinging to wilderness and thousands of miles from His Majesty the Nanny decided they didn’t need him and they could stand on their own. What’s the word for that? Oh, yeah: self-reliance.

Is it too late for a Self-Reliance Awareness Day? No, there’s no ribbons. Make your own damn ribbon. If that’s too much to hope for, how about a Multi-Trillion-Dollar Debt Awareness Day? The ribbon starts out black but turns deeper and deeper red. How about a We’ve Spent All the Money Including the Money for an Awareness-Raising Ribbon Day? An Impending Societal Collapse Awareness Day?…

As a casual glance at the headlines suggests, there’s almost nothing you can’t get government to pay for, but that’s no reason not to demand more. At its core, the “Occupy Wall Street” movement (in the political rather than the diaper-filling sense) is a plea for ever more extended adolescence funded at public expense. Don’t knock it. Dozing around listening to drum circles all day is more dangerous than it looks. Last week, several dozen members of “Occupy Las Vegas” occupying land located under the final approach to Runway 19 at McCarran International Airport narrowly missed being hit by a 50-pound slab of what’s euphemistically known as “blue ice” that fell from the bathroom of the president’s plane. Perhaps, as a symbol of the new post-self-reliant America of adult babies, Air Force One should be fitted with a giant diaper.