Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Watching Our Rulers Destroy Our World (Bob Higgs)

Bob Higgs writes on the tragic consequences of economic intervention and war:

Robert HiggsOur rulers are destroying the economy. Not little by little, as they usually do, but in huge swaths. Each great assault on the free market, whether it be denominated a bailout, a stimulus, or some other species of purported salvation, brings us visibly closer to the complete ruin of an economic order that required centuries to build. Awestruck, as if we were observing a tsunami sweep across an island, we can only watch the rulers' devastating actions, for which, strange to say, they expect the public to be grateful―and, truth be told, most people are grateful, and clamor for more of the same. We listen to the kingpins' lunatic ravings as they describe their perceptions of the current situation and solemnly declare their determination to "do something" to restore the prosperity that they themselves have demolished by previously "doing something" of the very same kind.

They gaze out at a financial debacle rooted in various government policies that induced lenders to do business with millions of borrowers who had no realistic prospect of repaying the loans. And what do these ├╝berguardians propose? They aim to relieve the unfaithful borrowers of their contractual obligations, to purchase the disappointed lenders' "toxic assets," and to "get credit moving again," so that new loans will be made, again at artificially reduced interest rates to borrowers who have no realistic prospect of repaying them. They are pouring credit madness on credit madness because they have no real understanding of how the economic world actually works and, even if they did understand, they are politically beholden to the owners and managers of failing economic behemoths who profited handsomely from the artificial prosperity of the boom and are now staring into the abyss.

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