Tuesday, July 15, 2008

The Lake And The Law

Our economy is a lake. The lake's level is down. We need to put more water in the lake. So we build a pump beside the lake. Unfortunately, the only place that we can get water from is . . . the lake. So we pump water out from the lake, and back in. This is how politicians try to fix the economy.

I got a check in May that was supposed to help the economy. Where did that money come from?

The government took it from someone, either through taxes or borrowing. They took it out of the lake, then put it back in--my check.

Republicans, Democrats, and the President quickly got together and passed the "refill the lake with lake water" bill. They could all say, "We care."

We ask the Wizard to help us, though it is impossible, and he gives us a phony solution.

Is there any way that we can make the economy better?

Here is my answer. Figure out how to make the economy worse and do the opposite.

If we pass a law that says everyone can only use one hand at work, we will not produce as much--even you computer nerds won't be able to type as fast. So, if we currently have "one handed production laws" we should axe them.

Any law that regulates how business must be done is a left handed law. Deregulation lowers costs, creates more business opportunities, more jobs, more competition for labor, higher wages, and better working conditions.

Taxes are "one handed laws." Lower taxes mean that more businesses can thrive, more employees can be hired, etc. etc. etc.

These ideas are common sense. Frederic Bastiat formulated the "one handed" criterion in the mid-1800's. It takes a lot of effort to forget this simple principle, but we try hard, so we do.

Freedom comes naturally to individuals. But, to collectives, like the state, freedom makes no sense.

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