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You don't coerce or injure others. Why can politicians do it?

Is corruption an accidental byproduct of statism?

Cronyism and failure are baked into the cake

Initiated force creates at least three perverse incentives that virtually guarantee bad outcomes…

First, tax-funded institutions have no need to perform well. Taxpayers cannot withdraw funding. The result is sloth and waste.  corrupt1

Second, politicians use failure to justify larger budgets. They say, “If only we had these tools or this regulation or a bigger staff, we could’ve prevented X.” That sounds reasonable, but the result is that failure gets rewarded.

Third, those who receive state benefits have a large incentive to defend them. But the cost of each benefit is dispersed among all taxpayers. This means that no one taxpayer has much incentive to resist any particular handout.* This imbalance creates bad incentives. The result is wasteful spending, spiraling debt, and rampant cronyism.

Statist failure is no accident. It’s not brought about by random or unintended consequences. The use of initiated force to solve social problems is a recipe for failure.

Cronyism, waste, and corruption are baked into the cake. Remember that when you hear a late night TV comedian joke about bureaucratic incompetence or read a headline about some political scandal.

By Jim Babka & Perry Willis

* -This idea comes from a book called The Logic of Collective Action. The author observes that where benefits are concentrated on special interests, but costs are widely dispersed to taxpayers, you get cronyism and corruption that is impervious to voter resistance.

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