… is from page 70 of Robert Higgs’s brand-new book, Delusions of Power; in particular, it is from a revised version of his April 2009 essay “A Dozen Dangerous Presumptions of Crisis Policymaking“:
All government policies adopted to meet a crisis presume that the government knows how to effect the rescue it seeks. If the crisis arises from an attack by foreigners, the government purports to know how to mount military countermeasures that will defeat or disable the enemy. If the crisis consists of economic malfunctions, the government purports to know how to alter its spending, taxing, or regulation so that the economy will be restored to sound operation. These presumptions are in general counterfactual.