Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Economics of Violent Intervention in the Market

...except in the case of the “private property” of a hereditary monarch, government officials own the current use of resources, but not their capital value. But if a resource itself cannot be owned, but only its current use, there will rapidly en­sue an uneconomic exhaustion of the resource, since it will be to no one’s benefit to conserve it over a period of time, and yet to each owner’s advantage to use it up quickly. It is particularly curious, then, that almost all writers parrot the notion that pri­vate owners, possessing time preference, must take the “short view” in using their resources, while only government officials are properly equipped to exercise the “long view.” The truth is precisely the reverse. The private individual, secure in his capi­tal ownership, can afford to take the long view because of his in­terest in maintaining the capital value of his resource. It is the government official who must take and run, who must exploit the property quickly while he is still in command.
Why government was doomed to fail from the start.

Again, it's the Gun in the Room.

And almost no one sees it as the cause.

Hang on tight.

Highly recommended.