Thursday, May 15, 2008

Politics vs. Economics: Politics Wins All the Time

Chain stores have been disliked for decades, at both local and national levels. Taking advantage of economies of scale that lower their costs of doing business, chain stores are able to charge lower prices than smaller independent stores, and therefore attract customers away from their higher-cost competitors.

The economics of this is certainly not too "complex" to understand. However, politics is not economics, so politicians tend to respond to people's emotional reactions-- and if economic realities stand in the way, then so much the worse for economics.

People have every right to indulge their emotions at their own expense. Unfortunately, through politics, those emotions are expressed in laws and administrative decisions by people who pay no price at all for indulging either their own emotions or the emotions of the people who vote for them.

Anyone who doesn't like chain stores is free not to shop there. But that is wholly different from saying that they have a right to stop other people from exercising their own freedom of choice. That's not too "complex" to understand.

Thomas Sowell


At 5/15/2008 11:36 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

George Will on the hosuing bailout...

This will, however, injure some innocent people, such as those young couples waiting to become homeowners. And it will benefit others who have earned an injury, such as speculators and others who bet that the prices of houses would never decline.

Everyone knows that there is only one commodity the price of which always rises -- major league pitchers. Concerning the market for them, Congress should do something.


Post a Comment

<< Home