The government giveth, and the government taketh away

August 10, 2011 § Leave a comment

From the blog of fellow geolibertarian Nicholas Rosen. This was originally a speech he delivered for Toastmasters. Wish we’d had the chance to see it delivered live.

WHEN I WENT TO COLLEGE,  I made the Dean’s List. There’s no need to congratulate me; it was actually an easy honor to obtain. A number of students found themselves on the Dean’s Enemies List; but my experience nonetheless contributed to my distrust of authority.

Yes, sometimes we need authority, need deans, army sergeants, judges, and even Congresscritters. But we should remain vigilant, and keep power limited, divided, and accountable. Power corrupts, and it attracts those who are already corrupt.

One Chicago City Councilman said to another Councilman, “I’m on the Ethical Practices Committee.” To which his colleague replied: “Oh? Have you found any?”

Not that Chicago has a monopoly on corruption. In Philadelphia, they’re now saving time by having new Councilmen sworn in and indicted in one ceremony.

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Adele: right about taxes and spending — but wrong about her source of wealth

August 9, 2011 § Leave a comment

Note: Corrections made, new material added, and irrelevant stuff subtracted.The Grammy-winning British singer, of whom this writer is a fan, is now also known for her rant about the UK’s high tax rate (which they recently put up again — in the midst of a recession!).

I use the NHS, I can’t use public transport any more, doing what I do, I went to state school . . . ! Trains are always late, most state schools are s[***], and I’ve gotta give you like 4 million quid, are you ’avin a laugh? When I got my tax bill in from 19, I was ready to go ’n’ buy a gun and randomly open fire.

Read more at National Review.

Stars, particularly in the UK, have been taking shots at the taxman since, well, “Taxman”…

Yet Adele’s remarks, and the publicity they gained, are useful to illustrate some important points.

CORRECT: Most governments seriously waste taxpayers’ money. If the government schools are “s[***],” to quote Adele, and the trains always late, she is as justified as any ratepayer to be pissed about it. That’s why schools shouldn’t be run by the government; they should be run as a private service on a competitive basis, just like almost everything else we buy every day. « Read the rest of this entry »

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