Yet another weird SF fan


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Yet another weird SF fan
 

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Squeegee Government

There used to be a common scam in Manhattan done by the squeegee men:

The usual procedure would involve groups of squeegee men surrounding cars stopped in traffic. Although some were merely providing a service, in other cases the windshield-washing would be carried out without asking, often perfunctory in nature, and then make demands for payment, sometimes with added threats of smashing the car's windshield if their demands were not.
In other words, someone does an unasked-for favor (sometimes even a useful one) and then charges for it.

In related news, Elizabeth Warren has been quoted as saying:

There is nobody in this country who got rich on his own. Nobody. You built a factory out there -- good for you.

But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn't have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory.

Now look. You built a factory and it turned into something terrific or a great idea -- God bless! Keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.

I was reminded somehow.

On the other hand, there is a simple way to test if the Elizabeth Warren story is correct. Let state governments make the investments that Ms. Warren regards as essential to wealth. (Most of their benefits won't cross state lines.) If expansive government is so important, we can expect that states with more government services will grow faster.

1 Comments:

Blogger TJIC said...

Zing!

11:38 PM  

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