Thursday, February 06, 2014

Meanwhile, Back at the C4SS Ranch ...

... I've got a couple of new pieces up.

Depends On What "Corruption" Is ...

The dual purposes of the IRS, as of every other executive branch institution, are to milk the cattle (that's you and me) on behalf of the political class and to suppress opponents of, or threats to, the current establishment (the purpose of the legislative branch is to pre-plan the milking and suppression; the purpose of the judicial branch is to justify the milking and suppression after the fact as required).

That's what the state does. That's all the state does. That's what it was designed to do. Any appearances to the contrary are window dressing.

All the kvetching, whether it's Republicans groaning about IRS harassment of their astroturf operations or Democrats whining that Chris Christie closed some traffic lanes on a bridge, is just internal bickering of the sort two schoolyard bullies might engage in while jointly beating down the other kids for their lunch money.

The problem with political government is not that it's "corrupt." It's that way by design. The problem with political government is that we put up with it.

Read the rest here.

The Problem Isn't "Patent Trolls." The Problem Is Patents.

Even if patents actually accomplished their advertised purpose -- "securing for limited Times to ... Inventors the exclusive Right to their ... Discoveries," as the US Constitution puts it -- they'd be a very bad idea. The claim that one can own an idea is silly on its face, and not a claim that anyone would pay the slightest mind to were it not enforced at gunpoint by the state.

But the advertised purpose of patents is not their actual purpose.

Their actual purpose is to restrain competition and limit innovation so as to provide economic advantage -- monopoly pricing power, in fact -- to established firms who, by virtue of their ability to pay off (pardon my indelicate language; I believe the word I'm looking for is "lobby") politicians, bureaucrats and judges, can thereby indulge their desire avoid market competition on price or quality.

Read the rest here.

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