The Bitter Wastes of Politicized America

The expansion of government replaces competition with coercion.  Free people lack coercive power, so they must compete with each other for business opportunities.  Customers must be persuaded.  Employees must be attracted.  It’s messy sometimes, and the process must be policed for theft and fraud, but it’s generally constructive.

Government power replaces all that with a simple, brutal, zero-sum equation: what you are given must be taken from someone else.  The regulatory process is corrupted by both ideology and special interests.  Even when it avoids outright corruption, the process is expensive, because it’s not constructive the way private competition is.  Wealth and value are lost through forced redistribution.  It’s a smaller, poorer world, in which political influence becomes valuable currency.  Your fellow citizens are not your competitors – they are your enemies.  They become selfish plutocrats or lazy parasites.   Their defeat becomes an occasion for riotous celebration.

And effective political power requires solidarity – sizable groups of voters acting in concert, to press their common interests upon the State, whose officials in turn benefit from packaged electoral support.  The best way to hold a large group of people together is to make them feel as if everyone else is out to get them.  The most effective political adhesives are distilled from hatred and distrust.  People who disagree with your agenda are “attacking” you or “robbing” you.  How commonly do you hear dissent described in precisely those terms nowadays?

When the government controls everything, there is no constructive relief valve for all this pent-up tension.  It all boils down to a “historic” election once every couple of years, upon whose outcome everything depends.  They’re all going to be “historic” elections from now on.  That’s not a good thing.

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2 thoughts on “The Bitter Wastes of Politicized America”

  1. Obama’s Depression is like zorbing. Before zorbing people got on a sled or skis and decided what path they would take down the mountain. The riders make the decision. That is how free markets economies work. Every participant makes his own decision about where he is going and how to get there.

    Zorbing is like the state controlled markets under communism in Russia or in Obamas Depression. The riders get on board and ride down the mountain. No control over what path they take to the bottom. If some go over a cliff then blame Republicans for ruining the Plan.

    Zorbing is popular with Russians. It is best done with vodka.

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