Monday, January 28, 2008

Schumer: buying votes, 100 at a time

Politicians like to brag about that they "saved jobs at home," which is merely a mask of protectionism. The FAA reportedly wants to move 100 jobs to Atlanta, but Schmumer will fight to keep them in New York.

I haven't the foggiest idea if these jobs are needed more in Atlanta or New York. Neither does Chuck the Schmuck. What I do know is that an economy is finite. Government can decree all it wants that it can create additional jobs elsewhere while maintaining existing jobs at home, but the reality is that resources are finite. Now, in the private sector, a company simply can't keep creating more jobs than it needs to meet its customers' demands. There's only so much money to go around, so a company must decide where jobs are best used. Government, however, simply takes our money (that we'd have spent elsewhere in the economy on what we deemed more desirable) to finance the additional jobs.

Government first uses its coercive power to extract money from us to sustain these jobs. Second, individual legislators tap into that coercive power for their own pet endeavors. In the private sector, jobs continue to exist only because of competition. Schumer, like John Kerry and virtually every other legislator, uses the power of legislative blackmail to keep the jobs.

The FAA isn't exactly free-market, but because they're the ones with the relevant information, I'd trust its bureaucrats more to move jobs where they think they're better used, rather than pandering politicians like Schumer.

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