Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Thomas Sowell: Our Public Masters (Not "Servants")

This is the most hopeful piece I have read today. 

I love Thomas Sowell.

"...we need to think about what there is about current political practices that repeatedly brings to power such a counterproductive set of people. Those we call “public servants” have in fact become public masters. And they act like it.

"None of this is inevitable. In fact, this pattern is largely the culmination of political trends set in motion during the 1930s and reaching a climax today. During the 1920s, the national debt was reduced and the role of government scaled back. Unemployment was as low as 1.8 percent."

"President Calvin Coolidge, with every prospect of being reelected in 1928, declared simply, “I do not choose to run.” Later, in his memoirs, he explained how dangerous it is to have anyone remain too long in the White House, surrounded by flattery and insulated from reality. What a contrast that attitude is with the attitude of the current occupant of the White House!"

"The rise of the permanent political class in Washington came with the rise of a vast government apparatus with unprecedented amounts of money and power to control and corrupt individuals, institutions, and the fabric of the whole society."

"The first step in limiting, and then scaling back, government itself must be limiting the time that anyone can remain in office — preferably to one term, to make it harder to become career politicians, a species we can well do without."