“I am a Libertarian because I learned economics.” I am a Conservatarian because of a line that Prof. Don Boudreaux mentions below that I first read, in a different form, in Robert Heinlein’s “The Moon is a Harsh Mistress.”
TANSTAAFL: There Ain’t no such thing as a Free Lunch
Progressives/Socialists believe otherwise (there IS a Free Lunch) because they believe everyone else’s money belongs to them – they get that Free Lunch by stealing that money from others. Not necessarily at the point of a knife or a gun but merely by the point of a pen aided by others who also no longer believe that Peoples’ Private Property is actually Private. Here’s a great example of that:
US Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA): “No, it’s because we have a misallocation of capital, a misallocation of wealth…I just feel very strongly, that it’s not just appropriations that’s causing this problem. It’s the lack of the revenue that we should be taking in to meet our obligations as a country.”
“Misallocation?” It certainly gives rise to the thought that this Progressive Socialist (for he was exactly that) did not believe the people who earned their money deserved that money. Instead, it is quite clear that he believed that the Government should be “allocating” what people should be able to have (or keep).
We are seeing this today with the “direct payments” from the Feds due to the Coronavirus economic shutdown engineered by Government. They are now “allocating” what future generations will be able to keep from the fruit of their labors because of the allocations given to their parents and grandparents today. Sure, there is a case to be made that since the Govt broke it (our economic system), they should pay for it. The problem is, the Government doesn’t have its own money. Even what it prints will be paid for by others.
The Piper MUST be paid and WILL be paid in one way or another. The question is “what is the form/format that the Law of Unintended Consequences will take?” Politicians are generally only concerned with the here and now – most can’t play “future checkers moves” to save our lives…
The title of this post is my answer to young Ben Crockett who asked me, in this interview, what question or questions we should put to politicians itching to intervene into the economy. (I thank Ben for having me as a guest on his program.)
Sorry for the small screen size – I couldn’t figure out how to make it bigger (at least not without spending a whole lot of time for what is probably a one-shot deal dealing with Brightcove’s player. Besides, it isn’t the video that’s important, it’s the audio.
(H/T: Cafe Hayek)