Thursday, February 26, 2009

Fairies, Unicorns, and Free-Market Republicans

Russ Roberts, responding to Minority Leader John Boehner's declaration that “the era of big government” has returned:

And what did we have the day and the week and the year and the decade before Obama's address? Ah yes, I remember. The Milton Friedman inspired laissez-faire world of free market capitalism and a limited Jeffersonian state.

I almost feel sorry for the Republicans. They know what their role is supposed to be. Having failed to inhabit the role for the last eight years (and a lot longer) they don't realize how silly they look slipping into the same old costume. It's like a fat man trying to do an ad for a weight loss regimen. It doesn't sell that well.

It would be an understatement to say that the Republicans have lost their free-market credibility. (If they ever really had it in the first place.) Yet politicos, and intelligent laymen, still inexplicably insist on linking the two; this only injures real pro-capitalists: it muddies the waters.

So, let it be said once and for all: Republicans do NOT represent laissez-faire capitalism. There. Now can we please move on?