Ayn Rand explains how leaders with a collectivist mindset can justify such lusty sums for pet projects and public largess even though we are experiencing record inflation partly due to previous enormous spending. It comes from altruism, paired with a neurotic lack of self-esteem in a leader or among lawmakers that fuels the need for ever more spending on “the public good”. It is based upon the need to feel good, rather than actually doing good.
At that point, when everyone who wanted the vaccine has gotten one and someone in authority suggests that restrictions should remain in place, or that you should continue to wear a mask, the question we should all be prepared to ask them is: “Who would I be doing it for?”
St. Thomas Moore had his Utopia, Marx and Engels had their Communist Manifesto. Though the latter is better known for the destructive nature of its implementation in this and the last century, it has a commonality with the other books mentioned: the necessity of authoritarianism. It is this need for an authoritarian form of government and a ruling class, either explicit as in the Republic or implicit as with Marx and Engels that binds most, if not all Utopian systems with each other.