Archive for June 2014

Political competition

The Business of Politics

One of life’s great ironies in the Western world is the number of people who fervently declare the great success and capability of capitalist enterprise, and then turn around to lament the gross inefficiencies of government. The staunchly conservative among us love to trumpet this apparent contrast. Then again, the liberals among us have their similar contrast, decrying the ruthlessness and greed of business, and pointing to the sober diligence of government regulatory agencies. Both sides love to contrast the business world with the government system, for each their own purposes.

In fact, the irony of this is that these two systems are two sides of the same coin. Governments are plagued by inefficiency precisely because they are run in ways that resemble capitalist enterprise. Sure, in government the currency is different—politicians earn seats in government, and they sell influence—but they run as a business all the same. Let me paint the picture in more vivid colour.Continue Reading