Implied Dissent

Tuesday, May 18, 2010


Krugman blogged what he sees as the Nth reason libertarianism doesn't work (no hints as to what A thru M are, nor if part O is forthcoming). Various bloggers respond negatively (here, here, and here, for instance). I have to say, though, Paul's right. Libertarians (at least the vast majority) are in favor of the government; we want much less of it than other people, but libs still support the institution. Every institution requires good people in decision-making positions (we'll interpret Paul's "incorruptible" as "honest" or the like). I guess what Paul misses is that shrinking an institution's role reduces the damage that comes from having not-so-good people in charge of it; conversely, expanding an institution makes the damage that comes from having those people in charge much worse. As a negative bonus, bad people tend to be attracted to more powerful institutions. Libertarianism is far more robust to the inevitable occurrence of bad people in positions of power than is big government

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