(Page 2 of 2)
Among other topics that Lott analyzes in 194 pages of text are the following: the 2000 Presidential vote in Florida (Bush wins!), the vote-depressing effect of measures that make voting (and vote fraud) easier, the left-bias of mainstream media, and the idea that a correlation exists between the cost of political campaigns and the size of government. With respect to the last point, the author notes that all the House, Senate, and Presidential candidates in 2004 spent a mere $2.17 billion for the privilege of dispensing a trough of 2.23 trillion federal dollars. Meanwhile, that same year, Proctor & Gamble spent $3.9 billion on advertising. The logic of this unwelcome campaign finance tale is simple: more government, more campaign dollars.
Another hornet-stirring correlation that Lott considers is one between female voting and big government — a linkage greatly attenuated by marriage and the responsibilities of parenthood. Lott also notes that felons, even more than unmarried and divorced women, vote overwhelmingly for Democrats — a fact that explains the ardor Democrat leaders are exhibiting to restore the “voting rights” of victimizers.
Perhaps the most revealing anecdote in Lott’s book occurs in the introduction. Here the author discusses the severe professional pressures that were brought to bear against him because of his work on behalf of a property tax elimination measure in Montana. The relevant correlations in this case involved more taxes, more money for government-funded educators, and more intimidation of professors who don’t go along with the program. Put succinctly: more state subsidies, less speech.
In sum, Freedomnomics is just the sort of product one would expect from an author whose book begins with the assertion, “The free market works,” and whose economic analysis starts with these words, “If something becomes more costly, people will do less of it.” Such frankness would have resonated with the late Merryle Rukeyser, a blunt talker who once repeated these no-nonsense definitions on his son’s popular financial program: “A liberal is someone who’s liberal with other people’s money, and a reactionary — that’s someone who can count.”
Richard Kirk is a freelance writer who lives in Oceanside, California. He is a regular columnist for San Diego’s North County Times and his book reviews have appeared in the American Enterprise, Touchstone, and the California Republic website. See his blog, Richard Kirk on Ethics: Musing With A Hammer.
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
The debacle of this president’s administration is both a cause and a symptom of the decline of American values. Unless Congress impeaches him, that decline will go on unchecked. An eminent jurist surveys the damage and assesses the chances for the recovery of our culture.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
The American Christmas, like the songs that celebrate it, makes room for everybody under the rainbow. Is that why so many people seem to be hostile to it?
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?
H/T to National Review Online