Quotation of the Day…

by Don Boudreaux on December 26, 2012

in Foreign Aid, Other People's Money, Reality Is Not Optional, Subsidies

… is from Jean-Francois Revel, quoted by Daniel Etounga-Manguelle on page 74 of the latter’s 2000 essay “Does Africa Need a Cultural Adjustment Program?”, which is chapter 6 in Culture Matters, Lawrence E. Harrison and Samuel P. Huntington, eds. (2000); in this quotation (from page 99 of this 1988 volume) Revel mocks the attitude of African “leaders”:

Give us development in the form of subsidies, so as to spare us the effort of establishing an efficient relationship with reality.

The very same demand to be protected from economic realities, of course, lies behind all calls by business people – business people in the industrialized world no less than those in “developing” countries – for subsidies, tariffs, and other special privileges that shield them from the fullest possible exercise of free choice by consumers.

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