Framing the Dialogue

Use of Knowledge

So why does the average American accept economic policies that are bound to bankrupt this country?  Logic tells us in our personal lives tells us that if we spend way more than we make we incur debt.  Anyone who has ever had a loan or a credit card balance knows that there are interest charges on that debt which must be paid on a monthly basis.  When we still keep spending beyond our means our debt increases and so does our monthly payments which a greater percentage of goes to pay the interest on the debt.

Most of us know this, yet even more accept the position that the federal government plans to spend its way out of debt.  That is the most insane concept on earth.  What if a doctor said that “I am going to stop your bleeding by stabbing you a few more times,” or a the claim that “you can lose weight while you sleep and continue to eat as much as you want while skipping exercise.” 

There is little doubt that a majority of the American public is hiding their heads in the sand or more concerned about their entitlements that they don’t care about the big picture.  They don’t realize that the current White House is pursuing economic policies that have failed wherever and every-time they have been tried.  We have even been warned by England, Germany, China, and even France to change our ways…quit spending and start cutting.  We have a very recent glimpse into our future if we take a look at the problems in Greece.

There are a few economic voices out there in the media like Rick Santelli or Neil Cavuto and a local Pittsburgher named Glenn Meakem, but most media are either silent or have become full blown cheerleaders of the Obama Administration.  It is like they have all jumped upon this progressive/socialist ark willing flawed economic policies to work.  As if by repeating the mantra they will alter natural processes and all will be good not realizing that their ark is not an ark but a tattered ship stuck in an ocean vortex moving inexorably toward the bottom.

The inspiration behind this post is an essay by famed economist F. A. Hayek.  His ability to illustrate the problems with solving economic misconceptions are much more eloquent than mine and I recommend reading the essay by following the above link.

“It seems to me that many of the current disputes with regard to both economic theory and economic policy have their common origin in a misconception about the nature of the economic problem of society. This misconception in turn is due to an erroneous transfer to social phenomena of the habits of thought we have developed in dealing with the phenomena of nature.”

There seems to be a belief by many and a wish by more that central planning can mitigate every economic problem that we might face.  When a problem occurs, we create more rules to try to address the issue which then create more issues that then need even more rules.  Unfortunately our excessive tinkering with economic markets has done little to protect us from market forces.  More rules allow creative people to find ways to circumvent the rules so we of course need more rules.

Do some research and find out how many more rules there are today versus those that existed before the Great Depression.  Have all of those rules by “well intended” legislators protected us from economic downturns?  When will the masses of Americans begin to require that our elected officials adhere to economic policies that we employ in our own homes?  People inherently know what to do…politicians either don’t or ignore this knowledge to feed their lust for power or wealth.  It is sad that elected officials who cause problems are the ones writing legislation to fix the problem that they have created. 

“The problem is precisely how to extend the span of out utilization of resources beyond the span of the control of any one mind; and therefore, how to dispense with the need of conscious control, and how to provide inducements which will make the individuals do the desirable things without anyone having to tell them what to do.”

My prescription for economic prosperity is to unleash the economic power of a capitalist America through fewer rules.  Some people will lose, but many more will win.  An affluent society is in a much better position to care for those less fortunate!  This is economics that work.

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