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Spare Me – and Walter Williams – Your Self-Serving and Insulting Sermonizing

One of the great honors and joys of my life is being a colleague and friend of Walter Williams.

Walter and I both teach on Tuesday evenings – he the first-semester PhD-level Microeconomic Theory course and I a freshman-level Principles of Microeconomic course. This evening before we went off to our respective classrooms at GMU, Walter and I were commiserating with each other (as we frequently do) over the insults that people of sense routinely endure from politicians.  Walter then related to me one of my favorites of his many insights:

I respect ordinary thieves much more than I respect politicians.  Ordinary thieves take my money without pretense.  Unlike typical politicians, these thieves don’t bore me with silly explanations of why their thievery is for the greater good.  Nor do ordinary thieves insult my intelligence by proclaiming that they’ll use the money that they steal from me to make my life better than I would have made my life had my money not been swiped from me.

I’m with Walter.  If I must be preyed upon, please let it be by unpretentious, ordinary, everyday street thugs and not by politicians.  The ridiculous insults that politicians add to the injuries that they inflict are insufferable.