NY Times on Government Perversion

Jury duty. You endure CNN and watch some crappy video about how judges don’t legislate from the bench. I don’t typically use my blog to rant so I’ll spare all three of my reader(s) the histrionics. It was a fairly productive morning (completed a workbook my accountant provides me each year) and the lawyer sitting next to me furnished me with a copy of the NY TIMES after he moved onto his Kindle.

There were three articles in it I wanted to mention/cite since each makes the case against BIG government (and the favored policies of the liberals who read that awful paper). It’s also the NY TIMES so you feculent liberals can trust the source.

(1) Britain’s Economy Stalls, in Setback for Cameron

It is that formula that has stirred allegations from the political left in Britain that Mr. Cameron and Mr. Osborne are embarked on an ideological crusade, using Britain’s indebtedness, the worst in Europe, as an excuse to roll back the power of the state.

Limestone Commentary: Um. Fact. Britain’s indebtedness is the worst in Europe. What’s a logical and plausible counter to that indebtedness? How about expanding the power of the state via more spending? What a brilliant, Obama-like, solution!

(2) Who Invests in Low-Income Housing? Google, for One

Mr. Copeman attributed the differential today in tax credit prices from one region to another to “the unintended, perverse consequences” of the Community Reinvestment Act, despite what he said was a need for five million more units in all 50 states. He said banks generally did not make these investments in places where they had no depositors.

Limestone Commentary: Perverse! Fact: When the government tries to legislate equality something perverse always happens. Need a modern day example (the CRA is from 1989)? The Obama administration is passing out health care waivers because what was signed into law is a disaster. And what basis are the waivers being awarded? The government shouldn’t be in the business of picking winners and losers -unless- that was the entire point.

(3) A Growth Agenda for World Economic Forum

Finally, there is liberalization. It has become fashionable to blame the global financial crisis on free markets. But the problem rather was that markets were distorted by bailouts and skewed incentives.

Freeing markets, whether by liberalizing rules on hiring and firing or sweeping away restricted practices in professions, still has the capacity to deliver a big long-term boost to productivity in much of the world. The Davos delegates should grasp this agenda.

Limestone Commentary: Two words- perverse and distorted. Two more…tea and party.

UPDATE
The Wall Street Journal adds context via Virginia Postrel’s Small Crafts vs. Big Government.

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