Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Agony and the Arrogance

Our government doesn't know what it's doing, but it keeps doing it anyway...

Here’s a bit of wisdom from that infamous economy wrecker, Senator Chris Dodd (D-Wall Street), upon passage of the Banking “Reform” Bill:

"It will take the next economic crisis, as certainly it will come, to determine whether or not the provisions of this bill will actually provide this generation or the next generation of regulators with the tools necessary to minimize the effects of that crisis." (Fox News)

Reminds me of Pelosi saying we’d have to pass health care so we can see what’s in it.  So they create hundreds of thousands of pages of red tape and tens of thousand of new bureaucratic overlords, and they don’t even know if it will work or not.   It wouldn’t be so bad if they were they were funding this progressive alchemy with their own money, on their own progressive commune out of sight of decent society...

Question: If this fixes “Too Big To Fail,” why does the bill include a huge fund for bailing out or dismantling banks that become too big to fail?

A Surplus of Government Arrogance, A Deficit of Humility
Amity Shlaes, as usual, provides a searchlight of reason that cuts through the progressive fog:
Good policy is what might be calledhumble policy. It starts with admitting what we don’t know. Thatincludes who will lead growth in 2011 or 2012, where that personlives, and how he or she will get capital. 

Humble policy thengoes on to concentrate on trying to let our economy become thatbroad space that future businesses and industries still unknown,might find inviting. 

Her steps to humility start with cutting taxes and regulation, "including the new health-care mandate."  This puts money in the hands of employers and removes uncertainty that this bureaucratic behemoth has created.  It puts more money and personal decision-making back where it belongs:  to the individual.
The next humble step would be to set policy to benefit theoverall economy, not any specific group.

The third humble policy is demanding a serious commitmentfrom lawmakers to abandon fiscal stimulus.

The fourth humble move is up to voters. It is to reduceexpectations about entitlements. 
Progressives lack the humility to acknowledge what Thomas Sowell has learned through a lifetime of study.  Each human being has a fundamental right to order his or her own life:

Freedom is not simply the right of intellectuals to circulate their merchandise. It is, above all, the right of ordinary people to find elbow room for themselves and a refuge from the rampaging presumptions of their 'betters.'" -- Dr. Thomas Sowell, Knowledge and Decisions
A free and orderly marketplace arrives at better decisions than any government program ever has.
"Out of every hundred new ideas ninety-nine or more will probably be inferior to the traditional responses which they propose to replace.

No one man, however brilliant or well-informed, can come in one lifetime to such fullness of understanding as to safely judge and dismiss the customs or institutions of his society, for those are the wisdom of generations after centuries of experiment in the laboratory of history." -- Thomas Sowell, The Vision of the Anointed, p. 112

For more on the topic of Government Hubris, I highly recommend George Will’s excellent column, The High Price of American Hubris


Linda said...

***No one man, however brilliant or well-informed, can come in one lifetime to such fullness of understanding as to safely judge and dismiss the customs or institutions of his society, for those are the wisdom of generations after centuries of experiment in the laboratory of history." -- Thomas Sowell, The Vision of the Anointed, p. 112***

Bless Thomas Sowell. His point here is so profound. It is unfortunate that this bit of wisdom has been lost on Barack Obama and his underlings. They road into town full of themselves and ready to "fundamentally transform" America. Unfortunately for Americans, there was very little history studied in order to heed warnings from our past.

It is obvious that this administration feels no need to consult the wisdom of those who have delivered our "flawed" system. President Obama, who has no shortage of arrogant self esteem, knows a "better way". His "level playing field" is designed to eliminate the hated rich upper class and to give all of us (the under-appreciated) the same opportunity to experience wealth as they least that is the presented picture.

The application of Obama's theoretical wealth spreading policies, unfortunately, results in spreading only unemployment and loss of wealth through business suppression. None of his policies has achieved the desired result of stimulating business success or creating real private sector employment opportunities. His actions, conversely, have depressed our economic picture, much as did the actions of our government during the Great Depression.

Mr. Obama would do well to listen to Thomas Sowell, and learn a little bit about widsom in action.

Great post, as ususal, SF! Thanks for your excellent analysis. I know it takes much time and effort.

Trestin said...

The Progressive-Marxists do not even like to acknowledge the existence of Thomas Sowell. He is everything they fear.

jadedfellow said...

Inna nut case, government will always fail in it's attempts to regulate and legislate human behavior. We as a specie are constantly changing, adapting, and evolving.

Economics in my opinion is a social science. I have gotten into many arguments with folks who maintain that economic activity is this, so it should be quantified and graphed. Economic activity is that, so to regulate it will accomplish this. Economic activity should function in this direction, so to stimulate will result in utopia.

Poppycock, about the time some egghead economist or politician recognizes what the hell just happened, human behavior has taken a different fork in the road and attempting to regulate what has happened does nothing to anticipate what is gunna happen.

Been around the block(heads) for awhile now and it neva ceases to amaze me that everytime something is regulated in an attempt to control human behavior, someone figgers out a way to circumvent and take advantage of the loopholes and someone gets screwed.

Yesterday is in the past, today is what will it be and the future is what I wanna make it. I ain't Joe Blow or Mary Quite Contrary and anytime someone or some institution attempts to control or regulate my behavior I will figger out a way to get around it. It's called independence!

Only one true Wisdom understands how we wuz made!

Christopher - Conservative Perspective said...

Thomas Sowell is brilliant but for discussion's sake I will go along with Jaded, with a caveate, i.e.;

What Jaded describes could very well apply to man-made organized religion as well, not faith itself mind you just the manipulations within the organization.

Silverfiddle said...

Thanks Linda! You blog covers similar "first principles" ground, and in a very articulate mannner.

I highly recommend everyone go visit your blog, Political Melange

Thomas Sowell is indeed a man the left should fear. His towering intellect crushes their vapid sloganeering and petty plans for social control.

Jaded hit the nail on the head. There is indeed a quantifiable mathematical component that is key to economics, but there is also a social science aspect which is critical. The best economists (Like Sowell and Hayek) are also astute social scientists and students of history.

Linda said...

SF ~ Thank you for the kind words and for directing readers to my blog. I appreciate it very much!

Correction to my comment above: Obama and his underlings "rode" into town...I was in a bit of a hurry when I wrote it this morning!

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