Arnold Kling  

For Discussion

PRINT
Why Is Employment Becoming a L... Productivity, Inventory Recess...

From Mario Rizzo:


The unreasonableness, or so it seems, of our political culture is, to a large extent, a product of the kind of special interest redistributionist society we have built.

Read the whole thing. My thoughts:

1. I have been troubled by the unreasonableness of political discourse for a long time. Abusive tone is rampant. I have nothing against taking a strong point of view. I have a lot against treating others with contempt.

2. I think that there is a large and growing gap between the knowledge required to execute the progressive vision and the knowledge that actually can be assembled in Washington. I think that this will lead to frustration and vicious political discourse, until power is dispersed in some fashion. In America, it is possible for people of different religions to live peacefully side by side. We need a political structure that makes it possible for libertarians and collectivists to live side by side. We all need to be able to have our Denmark.

George Will calls for Congress to take back some of the authority it has delegated to regulators. Be careful what you wish for. It really is not conceivable that a shift of power from technocrats to legislators would help. Instead, I think that the only solution is to shift power to smaller units of government, and to make it as easy as possible for people to choose the manner they are governed using exit, rather than voice. See Unchecked and Unbalanced.


Comments and Sharing





COMMENTS (6 to date)
Philo writes:

"We need a political structure that makes it possible for libertarians and collectivists to live side by side." Well, they *do* live side by side--just not happily. The members of each group, insofar as they live under a structure favored by the other group, feel that important human rights are being violated. They might decide to tolerate that, but they won't like it.

Floccina writes:

In a more libertarian society collectivists could gather together and live as they wish, in communes or what ever. With all property held in common or with a mix.

With current licensing and regulation it is more difficult so perhaps we get the collectivist to be against some regulations. The mutual aid societies had some level of collective but I think that they would find it difficult to for exampe hire doctors (even just GPs) today.

Maniel writes:

@"George Will calls for Congress to take back some of the authority it has delegated to regulators."
I would like to see Congress return some of the power ($) of the federal government to us taxpayers, to be allocated (if we so choose) at state and local levels where the real work of government (education, sanitation, security, etc) is done.

Joe Cushing writes:

If we are going to have federal regulators, (and we are going to) I'd like to see them write their regulations but not have them become law until they are passed by congress and signed by the president.

MernaMoose writes:

If we're going to have federal regulators, I'd like to see them have to go through an ardous process (akin to going to court and proving your case) whereby, they must prove that any and every regulation they want to impose, a) is in fact both necessary and beneficial for the general welfare, b) that unintended consequences have been given due consideration and mitigated to the greatest possible extent, and c) there's got to be a lot more that could be added here by someone who's a better lawyer than I am.

Make it hard to impose new regulations.

Mike writes:
Instead, I think that the only solution is to shift power to smaller units of government, and to make it as easy as possible for people to choose the manner they are governed using exit, rather than voice.

This sounds something like the Reagan era philosophy that those who govern best are those who are closest to the problem which for politicos of that era meant state and local government. I have become a cynic of that panacea.

The electorate doesn't have the interest in getting involved in state and local politics. The public employee unions discovered that and like a slow growing cancer have taken over S&L governments and spent them into bankruptcy the ramifications of which we are beginning to see. With the collapse in S&L government revenues due to the recession we will soon see this boil get lanced. As Warren Buffet so aptly says "when the tide goes out you see who has been skinny dipping."

As to the ultimate exit solution of voting with your feet, I am cautiously optimistic that there will be enough Texas and Chris Christies to show us the way but I am not overly optimistic. Is the only solution to create "Water World" communes out of surplus cruise ship/love boats?

Comments for this entry have been closed
Return to top