Welcome to the glorious year of 2015. Humanity has progressed so far in the past 200 years and especially the last 50. So much of how we judge our progress has actually been thanks to government, but how much does that really matter to you? Do you show up at a government building every day to receive your daily dose of fun? Do you bring your life sized Uncle Sam doll with you to the movie theater? Does the government raise your kids and give them lessons in morality and how to be a good citizen? Despite our poverty of interaction with the government we recognize it as the great good that has pushed us forward past many of our issues and inequities. There is still more to do but maybe it is time to reflect on our awkward, meandering, strange, benevolent beast we call government and observe all that we have accomplished. The first step to any honest analysis of the state of things is to try and prove ourselves wrong. After all if we cannot defend ourselves, what are we but bumbling chimps that just happened to strike gold? Worse yet, what if our luck runs out and we hit a vein of carbon monoxide? So what if we are wrong? Let’s take a look at this bizarro world and see what we can learn. What hidden risks might there be, is the canary still breathing? Bizarro world: This world is just like our own in governance. The laws are the same: the same tired politicians are pushing their wares and our presidential roster is unchanged. The biggest difference is that nature, economics, biology, and psychology work in the opposite ways or at least very differently. Let’s take a look at Bizarro world’s economy. In bizarro world inflation is partially based on the amount of money being printed, more money relative to the same amount of production tends to cause a rise in prices. This tends to hurt savers and create bubbles in the economy. In this bizarro world we have decimated the savings of every generation living after 1909 and made it more difficult to accumulate capital and increased the incentives for the populace to go into debt. Even worse the low interest rates distort the market by making business overestimate both the productive capacity and the amount of savings available to spend on consumption. In Bizarro world there are inherent inefficiencies in centralized solutions. While economies of scale provide some advantages, eventually the calculation problem overwhelms any advantages and decent solutions turn in to hideous monstrosities at scale. Huge programs designed to protect consumers increase costs while allowing certain companies to push out competition under regulatory burden. Other industries become so heavily subsidized that they no longer have an incentive to reduce costs. Difference number two education: In Bizarro world not all kids are created equal. In fact many don’t benefit from exactly 12 years of schooling. Worse yet the opportunity cost of training these students means that they are wasting years of their lives when they could be working and gaining skills and capital. Given that school is offered for free, cheap alternatives are priced out of the market. After all nothing is cheaper than free education. Instead of being taught by the best around, our students are being taught by the bottom of the barrel: a bunch of rent seeking ideologues that could care less about their students. A good portion of schooling is dedicated to teaching kids that the Bizarro world government is actually the solution to their problems, except in those rare instances in history when it was bad in which case modern bizarro world government can fix that too. Also the phenomenal results achieved by a few schools are actually are result the students being exceptional, not the schools. Good teachers like to have an easy job and flock to schools where their only real job is to hand kids some valuable material and give them minimal guidance. Lower achieving kids on the other hand could benefit from better teachers but only so far and no matter how many resources you throw at them they still fail. As we attempt to measure the performance of schools they become increasingly incentivized to game the system at the expense of education. The resource game quickly spirals out of control, as being in a position of power in okay schools leads to excuses for more and more resources to be funneled off to rent seekers. An infallible strategy since the students will only improve so much and there will always be an excuse for MORE. In Bizarro world the traditional lifestyle is the only viable strategy for raising kids. The church for all its flaws, is the best at enforcing this lifestyle. Kids raised outside of marriage, or in non-traditional homes suffer greatly and rarely reach their full potential. Often they do the things they shouldn’t like: teen pregnancy, drugs, stealing, hanging themselves, and being mopey good for nothing frown muffins. In Bizarro world gay people are actually pretty different from normal people. They tend to act with more immediacy and impulsiveness, which tends to make them disease vectors. Love isn’t the same everywhere. They live very different lives, aren’t all that interested in marriage and when they do get married generally view it differently. Instead of atomized rational individuals, in bizarro world humans react to changes in their environment. This includes changes in the definition and meaning of words and the real world actions that are associated with them. In Bizarro world gay people actually do weaken traditional marriage. These strange people instead of associatingassociating kids with marriage begin to associate it with love. In Bizarro world the most important element of marriage is having kids and raising them well (love comes in at a distant 2nd). This shift in language and thought which proceeded than the LBGT movement has actually changed the way people prioritize their lives and even raise their kids. In Bizarro world people aren’t rational individualists. In fact they are dependent on an irrational psychological phenomenon called religion. Even the atheists despite their desperate struggle are still addicted and cling on to foreign abstract crypto-religions all the while denying they need their fix. Government far from being the secular has been captured by the dominant strain of atheistic crypto-religion. Their priests in denial, assuage the consciousness of government that their actions are not in fact destructive. They tell the politicians that they in fact need to double down on everything they are doing now and find new ways to appease _________? The people don’t even realize what policies are implemented or what their goals are. They listen to the priests. Even the darn Christians tune in for the occasional sermon not realizing they are imbibing in heresy.
Let’s review our tour of Bizarro world. In Bizarro world our same policies that we love are still in place, however they have had the opposite effect of what we want. Bizarro world is flooded with people who will fundamentally change and destroy the country for the worse. The education system at its best is a giant misallocation of time and resources and at worst making kids dumber. Policies across the board are making life more expensive, discouraging savings, and depressing business. In Bizarro world the one institution that was central to the continuation of civilization was destroyed. In Bizarro world most of the country has been captured by an alien religion forged out of worst parts of human nature. In Bizarro world the institution that should be enabling eudemonia is slowly building a new unique form of hell. Luckily we live in the normal world. The family is an outdated institution under no threats whatsoever. In fact the institution can be improved by more recent inventions. Children just need a family. It doesn’t really matter what the format is. Public schools for all their problems have improved the lives of the downtrodden. Debt doesn’t matter and consumption is much more important than savings. Savings are the mark of greed. Don’t ya know? People if given enough of the right sort of education are rational individualist and anyone if given the proper chance can be rational too. In the real world decentralized solutions create too much inequality and allow people to be taken advantage of. Centralized solutions are the most fair and therefore the best for the economy since more people benefit. Our future is looking bright. I mean good thing we are right? Just think if we were wrong about anything really. That would be really, really bad. I mean if we were wrong about one of those things it would be a disaster. Good thing we don’t live in Bizarro world. Wait is the canary breathing?