Tuesday, February 21, 2006

Socialized Medicine Explained

I'll be honest. While I am absolutely against any form of socialized medicine I have always had a difficult time describing to people why socialized medicine distorts the market and ends up hurting many more people than a health care system practiced with free-market principles. George Reisman has written a succinct piece on the Mises Economics Blog that has guaranteed my ability to clearly explain exactly how socialized medicine mucks of people's bank accounts and lives.

Thursday, February 09, 2006

What Life?

The State of Maryland Legislature is considering House Bill 140 that will make it a fineable offense for anyone in a boat who is not wearing a life preserver.

Friday, November 11, 2005

Dangerous Searching

Here's a bit 'o fun coming down the pike. Yale University is putting together a symposium that's going to try and grapple with what the future holds for internet search engines in regards to its eventual regulation. I say eventual because it reads like the symposium organizers believe that regulation is an inevitable good. From the very first line of this article we see where this thing is headed, "Search is big business-". Wait a second! There it is! That word - business. In this context the use of the word business is used with the presumption that something evil (profit-making) is afoot. Add the 'big' in front of business and you've got a double whammy!

This panel will discuss the possibility of direct government regulation of search functionality. Such regulation might proceed under several jurisdictional heads (e.g. antitrust, consumer protection, or telecommunications) with any of a number of possible policy goals. Where one or a few search engines achieve dominance over a particular aspect of search, the possibility of such regulation seems more imminent. This panel will discuss who might regulate search, why, and how.
Well, that's a fun little weighted statement to get the symposium in a full regulating lather. Sure wouldn't want to allow the current situation of a flourishing, competitive internet environment to continue in perpetuity. Innocent internet denizens sitting with their laptops need a regulated environment within which to conduct their daily on-line lives lest they be taken advantage of.

This question that the symposium poses wonders whether surfers should be, "protected from bad search results? From having their search results altered?" I'd say...hmmm, No. If some Big Baddie search engine manipulates enough seaches for enough consumers then the consumer will get irritated with the Big Baddie and stop using them. Then maybe they'll go out of business, or not. But who cares! You won't be using them anymore because you'll be smart enough to be irritated and simply ignore them. The free-market solves yet another problem. But the Yaleites are going to waste their time discussing this question and probably come up with some nice regulatory features to increase costs for search engines that will eventually trickle down to the consumer.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

DiLorenzo Reviews Schuettinger & Butler

DiLo provides a nice little romp through price control history in this book review of Forty Centuries of Wage and Price Controls. A funny part of the book is when the not so funny Hermann Goering lectures the Americans on economic theory after World war Two.
Your America is doing many things in the economic field which we found out caused us so much trouble. You are trying to control peoples' wages and prices — peoples' work. If you do that you must control peoples' lives. And no country can do that part way. I tried and it failed. Nor can any country do it all the way either. I tried that too and it failed. You are no better planners than we. I should think your economists would read what happened here.
Goering nailed it! A totalitarian murderer learned his economic lesson.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

San Francisco Bans Handguns

Proposition H passed in San Francisco during yesterday's electoral frenzy. The passage of this proposition bans ownership of handguns for citizens anywhere within the city limits of San Francisco. This type of insanity has been the status quo in Washington, D.C. since 1976 and the results there have been horrid. Expect much of the same in San Francisco over the next ten years if this law doesn't get tossed out in the courts in the next couple of years.

Cinnamon Stillwell's opinion piece from 9/14/2005 made the case against the ban by envisioning how a post-earthquake San Francisco would treat law-abiding citizens without handguns to use for their protection against criminals. Stillwell conjured up images from the post-Katrina New Orleans joy to get her logical point across.