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Quotation of the Day…

… is from page 241 of Michael Huemer’s superb 2013 book, The Problem of Political Authority:

If we decide that it is wrong to charge money for a vital service such as rights protection, whereas one can charge whatever one likes for inessential goods such as Twinkies and cell phones, then we will build a society with plenty of Twinkies, cell phones, and rights violations.

One of the deepest myths concerning society is that the most trustworthy supplier of the most profoundly important goods and services is government. (Appeals to this myth were prevalent, for example, during the debate last decade about the wisdom of relying upon non-governmental firms, as opposed to relying upon government agencies such as the TSA, to supply security at airports throughout the United States.)  This misguided notion springs from the failure to understand (1) the nature and role of private property, competition, and market prices, and (2) the reality of the incentives faced by politicians, bureaucrats, and voters.


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