A column by economist Walter E. Williams (Why we’re a divided nation) strongly makes the case for more decision-making by free markets rather than by the government through the political process.
When decisions are made through free markets, Williams says, both parties win, because in a free market, parties enter into only those transactions that benefit them.
When decisions are made for us by the government, however, it is almost always the case that one party’s gain is someone else’s loss. Therefore, there is conflict. The more decisions made through politics, the more potential for conflict. Coalitions arise in order to try to get more from the government, and the most effective coalitions “are those with a proven record of being the most divisive — those based on race, ethnicity, religion and region.”
The column concludes with this: “The best thing the president and Congress can do to heal our country is to reduce the impact of government on our lives. Doing so will not only produce a less divided country and greater economic efficiency but bear greater faith and allegiance to the vision of America held by our founders — a country of limited government.”
I’ve mentioned many columns by Walter Williams that I thought were important. This column is certainly one of his best, as it very simply, in one short page, shows us a major fault in our current system of making decisions through politics rather than through markets.