Declining Wealth of a Nation

It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker, that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.” So wisely written by Adam Smith back in 1776 in his classic, The Wealth of Nations. Even today, even in America, many do not understand this. A majority continue to elect politicians who gladly attempt to impose “benevolence” through rule of law, by forcing butchers, brewers and bakers to act other than according to their own interest in a free market. And what do we get for it? Inflation (which, on our current course, will return), government red ink, bankrupt welfare programs, collapsing “too big to fail” industries, inconceivably huge government deficits, 10 percent unemployment, sluggish (if any) economic growth, and (for the first time) a prevailing sense that things won’t be better (nor necessarily even as good) for the next generation as the current one. Adam Smith, all those years ago, got that a free market is the best way to achieve a harmony of interests among human beings — which results in a rising standard of living for all. That’s what most Americans want — but not what they’ll get from the types of leaders who have mostly controlled our government for decades — least of all, the current crop.