Monday, January 25, 2010

My Question for the Doomsters: Then What? (Bob Higgs)

Bob Higgs says if civilization in Europe was able to progress (albeit slowly) during the time of the Black Death, surely we can find a way to survive when the US government defaults on its debt:

Although I am reputed to be a cynic, a pessimist, and a bah-humbugger, I am not given to doomsaying in the same way that a growing number of others are. Although I tend to expect, as Thomas Jefferson did, that the natural progress of things will be for liberty to yield and government to gain ground, and for me this will be an unwelcome course of events, I am not much inclined to predict that, especially in the near term, the economy, society, or government will suddenly “break down,” “collapse,” or experience some comparably terrible and complete calamity.

I will admit, however, that some of my friends seem mightily inclined toward such doomsaying. It’s almost as if they can’t wait for the catastrophe to arrive – perhaps because it will demonstrate beyond cavil that the existing order is too corrupt, irrational, and evil to maintain itself. Some people who write or speak along such lines, though, clearly have a vested interest: they are selling something — often precious metals, investment advice, “survival” goods, or “bearish” publications — that they expect to sell more readily to consumers who have acquired a heightened fear of impending economic doom.

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