Romancing the state vs. a bake sale for AIG

More

Conor Clarke writes,

Decisions about what will make our community better should be made communally -- by pooling revenue and making collective decisions about where and how it should be spent.

Let me fix that sentence.  It should read, "At the margin, even more decisions about what will make our community better should be made by Congressmen, and fewer decisions should be made by other members of the community."

To me, the institutions of the state do not represent a communal way to make collective decisions.  They are institutions that over time have evolved to give enormous concentration of power to a remarkably small group of individuals, who rarely exercise that power in a way that represents my preferences.  If it were up to me, the charitable deduction would be 100 percent for everyone.  That way, if anybody wanted to spend money bailing out AIG, they would have to hold a bake sale.


Jump to comments
Presented by

Arnold Kling

Arnold Kling earned his Ph.D in economics at MIT. He was an economist on the staff of the Federal Reserve Board. From 1986-1994 he worked at Freddie Mac. He started Homefair.com in 1994 and sold it in 1999. His fourth book, From Poverty to Prosperity, co-authored with Nick Schulz, is due out in April of 2009. He blogs regularly at Econlog.
Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

What makes a story great? The storytellers behind House of CardsThis American LifeThe Moth, and more reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Business

Just In