People of the left argue that Wal-Mart should be forced to pay its employees more. The corporation becomes the conduit for wealth re-distribution. You might ask, why don’t you just give money directly to the poor instead? Well the left finds welfare demeaning even though they call for more of it. They’d rather impose regulations on business because wealth redistribution laundered through business comes out clean. And by clean I mean it has the dignity of a paycheck attached.
The dry cleaning bill is passed on to consumers in the form of higher prices which are a veiled tax. Econ 101 says that the quantity demanded drops when prices rise so business have less need for workers… So the left is ok with lowered employment as long as the people that do work are paid well. But they’re really not ok with it. The protests in France are due largely to high unemployment. People aren’t making the connection that employment and business are related, maybe because the government provides so many jobs in socialist states.
As I read more of Hayek’s work I realize that taxes and regulations aren’t just an economic issue. It’s about freedom. I work from 9 to noon everyday to pay the government(taxes) which is then redistributed to pork projects like the bridge to nowhere or the $35,000,000 for the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board which is considered Katrina aid. That works out to about $3 from me for shrimp marketing. But that’s just one krill in the bucket.
A not so quick read of the 440 page bill soon demonstrated that the Louisiana lawmakers stuffed it with everything they could think of including many items having nothing to do with hurricane relief. The items include:
* $35,000,000 for the Louisiana Seafood Promotion and Marketing Board
* $8,000,000 for direct financial assistance to alligator farmers
* $12,000,000 for the restoration of wildlife management areas
* $25,490,073 to complete the Sugarcane Research Laboratory
* $120,000,000 for a laboratory, facilities and equipment at the Southern Regional Research Center
* $28,300,000 for the restoration and rehabilitation of forest lands
* $34,193,591 to support the research and education activities of the Agriculture Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service
* $19,000,000 for the acquisition of first-responder mobile communications, deployable cellular towers and for equipment necessary for public Internet access in a 100-block area of downtown New Orleans using wireless-fidelity technology.
* $250,000,000 for assistance to firefighters
* $100,000,000 for early intervention, prevention, and disorder treatment for children who are 0 to 5 years of age
* $100,000,000 for early intervention, prevention, and disorder treatment for school age children.
* $100,000,000 for substance abuse assessment, early intervention, prevention, and treatment.
* $600,000,000 for early childhood education
* $20 million for the establishment of development plans for development districts in the State of Louisiana
* $160 million to implement the 2005 recommendations of the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission related to the Federal city development in Algiers, Louisiana
* $7 billion for rebuilding evacuation and energy supply routes on top of $5 billion for expansion of road and transit capacity.
* $150 million for a small business loans fund and tax breaks on top of $50 billion in block grants.
I run a 5 block outdoor wireless network. It cost less than $7,000 in parts. They’re asking for $190,000 per block to wire New Orleans. To call it pork would be a massive understatement.
UPDATE: To be fair to the left I’ve included a letter I sent to an author who was defending the teaching of Intelligent Design in schools. It reads:
Do you question the functioning of your microwave when you cook a potato? Maybe it’s time you did. The “theory” of microwave radiation explains why your potato gets hot but alas, it is only a theory. We should mandate in our cooking classes alternative, untestable theories.
One leading proposal, the theory of Intelligent Delicatessen (ID), postulates that the ghost of Julia Child cooks food in our so called “microwaves” through the warmth of her ghost’s heart. A gift from the grave to time-crunched chefs everywhere. Food for thought.
Wolfgang Emeril Scopes
And the reply:
Love that clever sense of humor! What a great way to end my day.
Seriously, it’s far better than being called a “moron,” I assure you.
I will only say that neither I nor the Dover school board is calling
mandating of the teaching of ID theory in public classrooms.
Seems like a nice enough guy.