Thursday, April 02, 2009

Potholes on the road to serfdom 

I found this line in the Westover-Quimby exchange humorous:

Westover wrings yet one more post out of the notion that progressives fight dirty because they fail to acknowledge "threshold economic principles." This forces conservatives to argue about the details of tax and spending plans, where they lose because... well, free market economic principles have not had a great record when it comes to fixing potholes and helping poor little kids get breakfast.

Actually, Advertising Age reports that the free market is doing a very fine job in fixing potholes, at least in Louisville.
Don't be surprised if you see Col. Sanders out filling potholes. In an unusual cause-marketing push, KFC is tackling the pothole problem in Louisville, Ky. in exchange for stamping the fresh pavement with "Re-freshed by KFC," a chalky stencil likely to fade away in the next downpour.
And private generosity feeds kids in DC schools, but that's apparently not enough for Quimby. The fact is that government cannot produce a single breakfast unless it removes the value of that breakfast from someone else. It's not just lunch that there is no free production of; it applies to the other meals of the day. It can only choose to do so by deciding that someone's breakfast is worth more to society than someone else's breakfast. And it's highly unlikely that this animates the chooser as much as the thrill up the leg of the person who gets to do the choosing. As Craig replies, one wonders if the fear of free market solutions is really the fear of freedom itself.

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