… is from page 405 of my late Nobel-laureate colleague Jim Buchanan‘s and Yong Yoon’s insightful Winter 2002 Independent Review article, “Globalization as Framed by the Two Logics of Trade“:
If our mind-set allows for equality among all persons in their ultimate competencies as citizens, should not our mind-set also allow for equality among all persons in their ultimate competencies as creators of economic value?
DBx: The answer, of course, is yes. Or, at the very least, a heavy burden of persuasion is on those who answer ‘no’ (or even ‘maybe’). And yet many too many pundits, professors, preachers, and politicians talk and act not only as if the answer is indisputably ‘no,’ but as if those of us who answer ‘yes’ are, at best, either uncouth neanderthals or lackeys for oligarchs.
These pundits, professors, preachers, and politicians distrust ordinary people to negotiate competently for themselves in labor markets – distrust ordinary people on their own to competently assess the risks of taking various drugs or of patronizing various service providers – distrust ordinary people to educate their own children – distrust ordinary people to choose competently between foreign suppliers and domestic suppliers.
The arrogance of those on the “Progressive” left is a bit more open than is that of the the populist right. But members of both groups, despite their protests to the contrary, fancy themselves fit to order peaceful people about.