Monday, December 15, 2008

A Dark Path

We have an example in the 1930's as a time when Americans embraced and approved of policies that in actuality prolonged economic weakness. Marvin Olasky asks whether it could happen again. He writes:

What if Obama is operating by a new paradigm, with the serious goal of stabilizing happiness by eliminating "chance" (as much as is humanly possible)? What if he's thinking as an imaginative political strategist rather than an economic logician? He clearly needs to stabilize the economy to maintain his popularity, but rapid economic improvement (even if that were possible) would let the moneychangers back into the temple. Might it be better to push for less wealth but also less envy, because the days of most people getting richer but the rich getting much richer will be gone?

That's contra-rational in terms of average economic gain, but what if that's politically popular?

The scenario seems disconcertingly possible.

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