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Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Samizdata quote of the day

I’m not joking. I wrote last year about how many of the international bureaucracies are blindly asserting that higher taxes are pro-growth because government supposedly will productively “invest” any additional revenue. And this reflexive agitation for higher fiscal burdens has been very prevalent this week in New York City. It’s unclear whether participants actually believe their own rhetoric. I’ve shared with some of the folks the empirical data showing the western world became rich in the 1800s when fiscal burdens were very modest. But I’m not expecting any miraculous breakthroughs in economic understanding.

Daniel Mitchell

9 comments to Samizdata quote of the day

  • Deep Lurker

    Of course higher taxes produce prosperity for the bureaucrats and their friends. This just confirms their belief that Government is inherently wise and good, and only does evil when anti-government types bock the inherent wisdom and goodness of Government from acting. And since they prosper from higher taxes, then of course the masses must be prospering as well. If the masses aren’t prospering, it’s because they’re ignorant ungrateful rebellious kulaks who don’t properly appreciate the benevolence being shown to them by the Government and its bureaucrats.

    There’s also the quote: “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends upon his not understanding it!”

    Even if the quote was by the unspeakable Upton Sinclair, and even if he would never ever have wanted to see it turned on his natural friends and allies this way, it still applies.

  • john malpas

    The government needs more money to pay the ever increasing make work jobs – mostly for females.
    Mass university education has to b followed up by benevolent employment.

  • Runcie Balspune

    It never ceases to amaze me that leftist views continually stick to the belief that when people are employed by the government they miraculously adopt some superpower that enables them to make better and more informed decisions, despite the centuries of evidence contrary to the fact.

    The horrific thing is, that as leftist viewpoints become mainstream policies, and as with all such things they become more acceptable over time, eventually people forget what life was like before the government took over, and you hit fear of the unknown and resistance to change when you try and reverse the decision.

  • PersonFromPorlock

    Government isn’t just a business; it’s the best business in the world, because you can kill anyone who doesn’t want to be a customer.

  • Paul Marks

    People who think that high taxes and high government spending are good have no understanding of government.

    I used to give the example of the border of South Dakota and Minnesota – where would you rather be, low tax-and-spend South Dakota or high tax-and-spend Minnesota?

    Then the “Republicans” of South Dakota decided to increase the Sales Tax in order to “invest” in government teacher pay.

    These would be the teachers who teach that white people are evil and the suicide of middle aged white man is to be laughed about. See the recent Democrat meeting in Maine (reported on The Blaze) – where a speaker (of course a white middle aged man – filled with hatred for his own kind) got a lot of laughs making “jokes” about the increasing suicide rate of white men and how soon America would no longer be populated by these evil creatures (it was total Frankfurt School of Marxism).

    This is the sort attitude that “investment in education” achieves. People who think it is “good for the economy” are beyond aid – reason can not influence them.

    “But the government teachers in South Dakota are different Paul”.

    No they are not – not fundamentally.

  • John B

    It is Magic Money Fallacy – I have £1 in my left hand pocket; I take it out and put it in my right hand pocket.

    I now have £2.

  • Laird

    “People who think that high taxes and high government spending are good have no understanding of government.”

    Such people also have no understanding of economics. The stupid is strong in them.

    John B, you omitted a step in your “magic money” scenario: When you take the £1 note out of your left pocket you replace it with an IOU from yourself to yourself, then put the note into your right pocket. That’s how you get £2. Which, incidentally, perfectly describes the Social Security “trust fund” in the US.

  • bobby b

    “People who think that high taxes and high government spending are good have no understanding of government.”

    I know several people like this. They are government contractors. They have a keen understanding of how government works.

  • Julie near Chicago

    Ah! Laird, at 2:41 pm: Yes, and I fear our light-swords will not cure the condition. Perhaps there will be an improved version.

    Beyond that, your addendum to JB’s Magic Money thesis is masterful. The scam is laid bare for all to see. Very well done. :>)