Judged by His Own Criteria

by Don Boudreaux on April 27, 2011

in Energy, Hubris and humility, Politics, Prices

Here’s a letter to the Washington Post:

Stephen Stromberg is correct that the recent run-up in gasoline prices isn’t the fault of President Obama (“President Obama says that gas prices reflect supply and demand,” April 27).  But Mr. Stromberg is wrong to pity Mr. Obama for nevertheless being blamed by the public for their pain at the pumps.

Mr. Obama, like so many elected officials, won office by deluding voters with a grand image of a government that, in the right hands, can fix nearly every problem that troubles the good people of this republic – a government that can fix all that is broken, can cure all social ills (and many physical ones, too), and can transform this vale of trade-offs, scarcities, chance, and imperfections into a paradise in which the only suffering is that of Evil Villains finally brought to justice for the depredations that they’ve for so long inflicted upon the pure, noble, all-deserving We the People.

Because Mr. Obama assured us that with him at the helm Uncle Sam’s powers to “change” society would be vast and amazing, he deserves no pity for being held accountable for his inability to perform the marvels that he promised to perform.

Donald J. Boudreaux

BTW, while I disapprove of existing government restrictions on drilling, and while I recognize that Obama has in place – and threatens to put into place – a plethora of policies that result in gasoline prices higher than these prices would otherwise be, I sincerely do not believe that much, if any, of the recent run-up in gasoline prices is his fault.


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