October 1st, 2014


True dat.

Anna and I were talking about things, and this popped out of my mouth. I'm jotting it down here before I forget it.

The Left is fond of two economic ideas. Neither works. And they contradict each other.

The first idea is that some people make too much money. They say that so-and-so is getting "more than his share." This assumes that the supply of wealth in the society is static, fixed. It's a zero-sum game, in which whatever X has comes at the cost of denying Y something. But the supply of wealth is not fixed. More can be created, though not by government. Re-distribution, of course, creates nothing.

But the other big idea the Left promotes is that you can appropriate money you don't have and pay for it by either printing more, borrowing more, or simply charging it to the dust and letting the rain settle it; in other words, that you can (by mere fiat) expand the supply of wealth that their first nostrum assumes to be fixed. This is a contradiction which they either don't notice or carefully do not call attention to. And on its own merits, it's as big a failure as their first idea.