ROBERT FRANK ~ THE DARWIN ECONOMY ~ 2011

~ ITI-NRA-TLUAGWTPTL-MT-OBOITTTCOTW-DTMVFOM ~ If There Is – No Realistic Alternative – To Living Under A Government With The Power To Levy – Mandatory Taxes – Our Best Option Is To Try To Create One That Will – Deliver The Most Value For Our Money

~ ATOAA-NOGR-B-A-DTA ~ A Tax On Any Activity – Not Only Generates Revenue – But – Also – Discourages The Activity

~ AA-RD-‘SE’-AT-‘COB’-‘SOC’-A-‘CTWWLOL’-B-IAVC-B-VE-LAR-C-SE ~ Antigovernment Activists – Reliably Denounce – “Social Engineering” – Attempts To – “Control Our Behaviour” – “Steer Our Choices” – And – “Change The Way We Live Our Lives” – But – It’s A Vacuous Compliant – Because – Virtually Every – Law And Regulation – Constitutes – Social Engineering

~ LAHAT-O-SL-SS-TL-SE-I-I-SB-NS-IWOLPTCUHTO ~ Laws Against Homicide And Theft – Noise Ordinances – Speed Limits – Stop Signs – Traffic Lights – Social Engineering – Is – Inescapable – Simply Because – Narrow Self-Interest Would Otherwise Lead People To Cause Unacceptable Harm To Others

~ EDRBTHAIODLTWMRBTUO ~ Every Dollar Raised By Taxing Harmful Activities Is One Dollar Less That We Must Raise By Taxing Useful Ones

~ WGS-OC-SBCWP ~ Wasteful Government Spending – Of Course – Should Be Cut Whenever Possible

~ IETSH-S-WCPITGHNUM-MSNHIACWLIITTAH-AIFWDCATMOTGATH-OPOP ~ It’s Easy To See How – Someone – Whose Core Philosophy Is That Government Has No Useful Mission – Might See No Harm In Appointing Cronies With Little Interest In The Task At Hand – Appointing Incompetent Friends Who Don’t Care About The Mission Of The Government Agencies They Head – Often Plays Out Poorly

~ TSFWT-EPW-ISIII-PW-IAMETET-PW ~ The Search For Ways To – Eliminate Private Waste – Is Still In Its Infancy – Private Waste – Is Actually Much Easier To Eliminate Than – Public Waste

~ TIP-ITTUDA-WRMS-SHO-PPQ-ATEOPRR-SATAPOIFDHASQ ~ The Important Point – Is That The Ultimate Decision About – Whether Regulation Makes Sense – Should Hinge On – Purely Practical Questions – About The Efficacy Of Proposed Regulatory Remedies – Slogans About The Absolute Primacy Of Individual Freedom Don’t Help Answer Such Questions

~ ICBAI? ~ Is Cost Benefit Analysis Immoral?

~ DAGR-EBCAB-ITE-QRWSRTDAQPO-WRSWD? ~ Defending Any Given Right – Entails Both Costs And Benefits – In The End – Questions Regarding Which Specific Rights To Defend Are Quintessentially Practical Ones – Which Rights Should We Defend?

~ DAGRCBFTWVI-B-IAGC-NJFTTWETR-BA-FTWBIRBI ~ Defending Any Given Right Creates Benefits For Those Who Value It – But – It Also Generates Costs – Not Just For Those Tasked With Enforcing The Right – But Also – For Those Whose Behavior Is Restricted By It

~ TITMTWPWPFBT ~ The Infrastructure That Made Their Wealth Possible Was Paid For By Taxes

~ TOAT-SE-I-CA ~ The Only Alternative To – Social Engineering – Is – Complete Anarchy

~ AT-RMF-HBAC-IOI-FO-HSFTB-U-MOTAHBCBMPABEOTPS-APWBML-I-WCA-I-FV-A-TRBSAM ~ Attempts To – Remedy Market Failure – Have Been A Central – If Often Implicit – Focus Of – Human Societies From The Beginning – Unfortunately – Many Of Those Attempts Have Been Compromised By Misguided Perceptions At Both Ends Of The Political Spectrum – Additional Progress Will Be More Likely – If – We Can Abandon – Ill-Founded Views – About – The Relationship Between Success And Merit

~ IWTOBTAATSUPCSTRBTU-IAINTRA ~ If We Think Of Being Taxed As Akin To Some Unknown Person Confiscating Something That Rightfully Belongs To Us – It’s Almost Impossible Not To React Angrily

~ IPTTOTROGLITOS-TATTOTROBLIOF ~ If People Tend To Overlook The Role Of Good Luck In Their Own Success – They Also Tend To Overlook The Role Of Bad Luck In Others’ Failures

~ TPFITTWJL ~ The Plan Fact Is That They Were Just Lucky

~ TPFPTPHANRTKTFBTTAECITLM-GTETWIROPIFBT-TPHNMMS ~ The Prevailing Framework Presumes That People Have A Natural Right To Keep The Full Bounty Their Talents And Efforts Command In The Labor Market – Given The Extent To Which Incomes Rest On Public Investment Financed By Taxes – That Presumption Has Never Made Much Sense

~ WHNPRTBT-HTOTEWIEG-TCIOR-A-SQ ~ We Have No Persuasive Reasons To Believe That – Higher Taxes On Top Earners Would Inhibit Economic Growth – This Claim Is Often Repeated – And – Seldom Questioned

~ IWC-TTR-TNHORTRWN-B-TGN-IT-CTCBLOTEWHTIIAW ~ If We Can’t – Tax The Rich – There’s No Hope Of Raising The Revenue We’ll Need – But – The Good News – Is That – Certain Taxes Can Be Levied On Top Earners Without Harming Their Interest In Any Way

~ TOHACTBKA-PT ~ Taxes On Harmful Activities Came To Be Known As – Pigouvian Taxes

~ TPOAPTGHSESRTC ~ The Price Of Any Product That Generates Harmful Side Effects Should Reflect Their Cost

~ MPSDHV ~ Many Public Services Deliver High Value

~ TPSOO-PP-IRDHB-ACOS-T-CMTTNOTACWF ~ The Primary Source Of Our – Political Paralysis – In Recent Decades Has Been – A Collection Of Slogans – That – Completely Misrepresent The True Nature Of The Actual Choices We Face

~ PA-WABC-U-APSFATCHTO-A-RE ~ Personal Autonomy – Will Always Be Compromised – Unless – All Problems Stemming From Activities That Cause Harm To Others – Are – Resolved Efficiently

~ T-BL-ITI-SR-DMT-TEP-ALAP-TSAOTE-TPAOEC ~ The – Bottom Line – Is That If – Society’s Rules – Don’t Make The – Total Economic Pie – As Large As Possible – They Squander An Opportunity To Enhance – The Personal Autonomy Of Every Citizen

~ B-GG-DJH-IMBNC-STB-R-SHHUFTKOSMOUWTLI ~ But – Good Government – Doesn’t Just Happen – It Must Be Nurtured Carefully – Starve The Beast – Rhetoric – Surely Hasn’t Helped Us Forge The Kind Of Society Most Of Us Want To Live In

~ ANOW-AGTTTREB-ATEGWFOO-BTCRH-TOCEAOTO-IWTTDTBWTLTP ~ Almost No One Wants – A Government That Tries To Regulate Every Behavior – A Truly Effective Government Would Focus Only On – Behaviors That Cause Real Harm – That Others Cannot Easily Avoid On Their Own – It Would Try To Discourage Those Behaviors With The Lightest Touch Possible

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