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Here’s a letter to the Los Angeles Times:

Tom Lutz is probably correct that Rep. John Boehner’s much-publicized weepings are nothing more than trashy political theatrics (“A crying shame,” Dec. 16).  But Mr. Lutz is incorrect to assert that it is a “contradiction” to claim to care about children while being against government programs such as “health insurance for children,…. against unemployment benefits, against equal pay, against food safety, against money for teachers, against raising the minimum wage, against tobacco education, mine safety, alternative energy, pollution control, whistle-blower protection, science and technology research.”

To oppose government provision of such things is not to be “against” such things.  Many people – including myself – share Mr. Lutz’s wish that every American enjoys unemployment insurance, safe foods, safe mines, scientific research, high pay, affordable health care, and all the other advantages of modern commercial society.  What we don’t share with Mr. Lutz is his assumption that these benefits can be provided only (or best) by government.  The market, we believe, is a more reliable provider.

Maybe those of us who argue that ordinary people would be more prosperous and secure with less government are mistaken.  But as long as Mr. Lutz and other “Progressives” continue to impute sordid or schizophrenic motives to persons who wish to rein in the state, they disadvantage themselves politically by failing to understand their opponents.

Donald J. Boudreaux


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