The Pied Pipers

The majority of the voters are just dull and mentally inert people who dislike thinking and are easily deceived by the enticing promises of irresponsible pied pipers. Subconscious inferiority complexes and envy push people toward the parties of the Left. They rejoice in the policies of confiscating the greater part of the income and wealth of successful businessmen without grasping the fact that these policies harm their own material interests. Disregarding all the objections raised by economists, they firmly believe that they can get many good things for nothing.

via The Political Chances of Genuine Liberalism – Ludwig von Mises – Mises Institute.

This was, without doubt, an important reality at one time. We have progressed to the point that we have a large body of people who engage in some lightweight thinking, recognize social ills, and believe that confiscating and distributing the wealth of the successful will help reduce the social ills they see. That’s progress of a sort. Of course, the end result is the same – everybody’s material interests are harmed and the social ills multiply. The pied pipers still make enticing promises, but today it’s less about a chicken in every pot and more about universal health care, a hazard free world, and a good green feeling.


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