Monday, August 14, 2006

But government helps the poor !

It seems that, for most people, the main problem in abandoning belief in governemnt is the belief that government is good for the poor.

This, of course, is an absolutely ridiculous belief. The poor have no political voice, and everything that government does goes against their interests. To illustrate this, I am going to go through all the measures that are supposed to help the poor.


* The minimum wage.
Assumed effect : Helping the poor get better wages.
Real effect : Big corporations can afford to pay the higher wages, small corporations are crushed. Raises the wages of a few, lays off many, and keeps the less educated and teenagers from getting jobs.

* Coercive unions and guilds.
Assumed effect : Helping the workers get better conditions, helping people get better service from professionals.
Real effect : Blocking access to entry for new professionals, Entrapping workers into a coercive democratic system, work insecurity and hardship, giving government control over the entire profession through one centralized structure, giving workers rights on the back of the general population (such as in construction or health care).

* The welfare state.
Assumed effect : Helping make society fairer.
Real effect : Trapping people in a system that denies them savings, making them slaves of the ruling class.

* Protectionism
Assumed effect : Keeping jobs at home.
Real effect : Making consumer products more expensive for everyone (which hurts the poor more than others), keeping inefficient and more demanding jobs while making slowing down the growth of the service sector, slowing down third-world imports.

* Anti-GM foods.
Assumed effect : ? (apart from pure insanity, I see no possible reason to be anti-GM foods)
Real effect : Preventing the implementation of agricultural products that could solve world hunger.

* The Greenie religion in general.
Assumed effect : Like, save the world, dude.
Real effect : The DDT ban genocide alone is the most devastating government genocide in history in the third-world. Nothing else is really necessary, but one can also mention that anti-pollution measures slow down the growth of third-world economies, and Greenie measures in general make the environment worse in the third-world (see for instance the textbook example of the preservation of elephants in countries that permit ownership of them, as opposed to their loss when they are not protected by property rights).

* Anti-immigration laws.
Assumed effect : Not have your job "stolen" by an immigrant, I guess.
Real effect : Making it harder for the economically oppressed third-world populations to make a better life for themselves. They are one of the last acceptable forms of slavery.

* Foreign aid and erasing third-world debts.
Assumed effect : We're helping them !
Real effect : Some foreign aid does help people directly, but most of it only serves to finance dictatorships that oppress people in the third-world, or helping to line their coffers in the end.

* Public schools and public health care.
Assumed effect : We're giving essential services to people who can't afford it. It's better than a two-speed system !
Real effect : We're giving mediocre services to everyone, and giving special privileges to those who can afford it - in short, the most insidious two-speed system there is.

* Social Security.
Assumed effect : Helping poor people's retirement.
Real effect : Legitimizing a corrupt Ponzi scheme which is in effect, a tax on a tax. Gives less than saving and investing one's own money.

Other forms of intervention that hurt the poor: the War on Drugs (makes lower-income streets unsafe), and government guilds and trusts (makes the price of services higher, lowers choice).


The most basic problem here is that government has no reason at all to help the poor, rather the contrary. If it can entrap and exploit them through the welfare system, and control over education and health, then all the better. Government forces people to believe in its legitimacy by exploiting those means of thought control. Why would it relinquish them ?

In a market anarchy, the poor still don't have much of a voice, but at least people have an incentive to help the poor. No one wants to live in a stagnant society, and everyone reaps the benefit of living in a vibrant and progressive society. Therefore market solutions will arise to solve such social problems, just as they did before the welfare state. Government has no interest in helping the poor, and when conditions in a given society become intolerable, it simply relies on the private sector to resolve the situation.

1 comment:

C said...

That is why privatization is cropping up everywhere. It is more costly and the government can continue to tax them. Great blog!