When “Nothing” Is Better Than “Something”
Learn Liberty – a group we’ve never heard of before – has a neat video out articulating the antithesis of the great global government economic intervention of the last five years.
You know … the one that hasn’t worked.
The clip – narrated by George Mason University economics professor Dr. Lawrence H. White – outlines how government responses to such crises invariably waste vital taxpayer resources and weaken the ability of the free market to effectively rebound.
“The call for government to do something takes it for granted that government knows what to do – knows how idled resources should now be redeployed,” White says. “But in practice government lacks this knowledge and more often it makes wasteful decisions. It throws taxpayer money into losing ventures in the form of bailouts and subsidies. The results in the recent recession – the unusual slowness and painfulness of the recovery – can’t be encouraging for the ‘government-should-do-something view.’”
According to White, letting government manage a recovery is “putting all of our eggs in one basket.”
“One bad decision could mean disaster for everyone,” he says.
Instead White says the best response to a recession is to rely on “decentralized decision-making by individuals in the market.”
Under this system mistakes are smaller, more easily corrected and best of all “taxpayers will no longer prolong losing ventures at the expense of winning ventures that could use the same resources to produce more value.”
Makes sense to us … but then again we obviously subscribe to the crazy view that government should perform only a handful of core functions efficiently.
In fact we argued against the great government intervention from the beginning.
“Whether on entitlements, runaway Republican (and Democratic) deficit spending or the current bailout disaster, the fact is the government created these problems, people,” we wrote more than five years ago. “And assuming more government is somehow the answer is like assuming that mainlining more heroin is going to cure your addiction.”