Part One: Drying up the tax fountain
I suspect many people have troubling getting a good grasp of the on-going conservative struggle to prevent large-scale takeover of the economy by the federal government. I think there are two main obstacles to their understanding.
First, the idea of the virtuousness of the market as a regulator and organizer of economic life is difficult to communicate. It’s an abstract idea and it does not correspond well to people’s own experience. In their personal life, people think that when good things happen it’s a because someone (some one) made good decisions. First, it’s Mom, and then, it’s the “leadership” of the many organizations within which they live, schools, churches and especially employing organizations. To an extent, the one is themselves.
In daily life, there are few occasions to reflect upon the fact that the myriad decisions made by anonymous decision-makers, including bad decisions, aggregate into good outcomes. The market processes involved are both too magical-seeming and too abstract.
At any rate, for some reason, schools and universities do a bad job of explaining these processes. Liberal Arts teachers don’t understand them themselves and they are hostile to them. Most of them are born socialists. If you eat the King’s bread long enough, you become a monarchist. Continue reading