The Tacit Admissions of the Political Class, Part 1
Whether consciously or not, people are constantly evaluating the things that they read, see, and hear for information that is not there. We call this “reading between the lines,” and it is an element of communication not to be underestimated. In fact, there is quite often more information available to those who notice what is avoided than to those who only notice what is offered. Nowhere is this more apparent than with the political class.
The Obamacare Debacle
Much has been made of Obamacare “waivers,” those ridiculous exceptions that have been aptly likened to Ayn Rand’s dystopian “defreezers.” In April, more than 200 such waivers were given, and out of the entire country, some 20% were given to businesses in Nancy Pelosi’s district. I am sure Pelosi has her reasons, and I am sure they sound good to her voter base. But let’s read between the lines.
First of all, the fact that Obamacare, which is a massive, top-down, bureaucratic health regulation scheme, needs to issue hundreds and even thousands of waivers is an admission that regulating health care through massive, top-down bureaucracy does not work.
Furthermore, that so many individualized waivers need to be issued also indicates that the health care market is individualized, and therefore we probably never should have attempted a monolithic regulatory structure in the first place.
And finally, the fact that so many waivers come from a prime mover behind the regulation itself indicates that Pelosi knew exactly why Obamacare would not work and imposed it anyway, intending cynically to reap the political benefits that come from handing down dispensations from on high like some corrupt medieval pope.
Tax Harmonization and Unwanted Competition
Much has also been made of “tax harmonization,” and an entire corrupt organization has sprouted in order to push countries to mirror each others’ policies in the ultimate service of neutered competition. But why worry about “tax havens” if your country is competitive? Upon reading between the lines, it quickly becomes obvious that international pressure on tax havens and the push to harmonize taxes and regulations stems entirely from big-spending countries’ pure lack of desire to compete.
First of all, pushing for tax harmonization is a tacit admission that people who can leave will do so if taxes are punitive. Secondly, it is a tacit admission that people prefer lower taxes. Third, it is a tacit admission that the tax harmonization pushers have no interest in allowing people to act freely and no interest in offering those conditions that people would prefer. Ultimately, we are forced to conclude that, in many large countries, taxing and spending is done for its own sake and not for the ultimate benefit of the citizens who pay the bill. Jurisdictions that offer more freedom are thus naturally quite the threat.