Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Someone Else Made That Happen

It is true, as Sunny pointed out, that we cannot do most things that we do in modern society without using something that others made or did.

 But I prefer to look at it from a Milton Friedman point of view, the libertarian "pencil" argument for the free market, not the "hey, we all chipped in to this government pool that made things that facilitated your product or service" argument. The fundamental difference is the libertarian argument is that we all cooperate voluntarily, without even really knowing necessarily that the tree I just cut will be used for a pencil or a two-by-four or to start a fire in someone's fireplace. It's just a spontaneous order, not directed by any government agency or agencies, that gets the job done ... and it asks nothing from anyone.

The "the government made it happen" argument suffers from a few fundamental problems. One, the government couldn't make it happen without businesses. In other words, it's really a self-defeating argument in the end. That should be enough to end the argument right there.  But secondly, the Government didn't "build the roads" to facilitate business succeeding. It did it to facilitate everyone's ability to go places and perhaps take things with them. They're for everybody, and everybody pays for them ... especially businesses, who not only pay a bunch of taxes but pay the rest of us who paid our taxes to build the roads. Which is back to the first argument.

And lastly, the core reason the "you didn't build that" argument is being used here is to justify taking yet more money from someone. And you can bet your bottom dollar, so to speak, that if they get an additional 5% this time around, it won't be enough next year, and the same psuedo populist class warfare argument in disguise will be used to shake them down for yet more .... and so on, and so on, and so on.

So a pox on all that. Sunny made the sandwich, dammit.

1 comment:

Whitehawk said...

I hate to give the Prez any help but why doesn't he just say, "You heard me say that people with businesses don't deserve credit. They didn't do that on their own. Well, I don't deserve credit for saying that, the people who developed English as a language deserve credit for that not me."