Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Free market helps economy grow

(My Clovis News Journal column for July 22, 2016)

Liberty gives prosperity a chance (my choice for the headline)

How's the economy treating you?

Unless you have a job where people are forced to pay for your services whether they want them or not, things could probably be better.

You may have many ideas which could bring in money by offering products and services to people. You just need the chance.

The main limiting factor is often the roadblocks to economic growth erected by government. Things like permits, licenses, taxes, and all the other laws and regulations which seem to exist for no reason but to destroy the economy, one entrepreneur at a time.

The most effective lie used to justify those economy destroyers is that without them you'd harm your customers. But, in a free market, how long would your business-- or you-- last if you were known to be harming your customers?

Consider what most people imagine as a worst case outcome of a free market.

Yes, in a truly free society you'd be able to set up shop selling heroin. Without a license, to anyone, with no government to watch over your shoulder. Does that scare you? It shouldn't. That's how it has always been, except for the past century or so. The drug abuse problem has never been worse than under prohibition, plus prohibition breeds violent crime.

A free market heroin seller would be personally responsible if he sold a contaminated product, sold to someone who didn't understand the dangers, or cheated customers. There would be no corporation to hide behind. It would be in his best interest to sell responsibly, and to make sure his customers understood the dangers. Yes, some people would still abuse his product, and some would die. Prohibition never prevents this, either. But there would be no crime associated with his business.

If a customer wrecked his life with addiction, he couldn't end up on welfare (including a prison stay) financed by robbing his neighbors through taxation. If he needed financial help, he (along with any family who stayed around) could appeal to the charitable nature of others. If he is known as a bad or untrustworthy person, he'd have a hard time finding someone willing to help. Just as it should be.

You probably have better ideas of what you'd do in the absence of the State. The same rules of the market would apply to your venture, as well.

Liberty doesn't result from prosperity; liberty gives birth to prosperity. It's time to bring liberty-- and prosperity-- back to America.

If you get any value from my labors, consider rewarding me with your financial support. This blog is in its 10th year now. If you believe I have contributed anything to the conversation regarding liberty during these ten years, and believe I have more to contribute, help me stay online.

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