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Re: Bad govt represents bad people?



[email protected] says:
> [email protected] wrote:
> >Actually, as public choice economic theory has shown, bad government
> >tends to be the inevitable result of the evolutionary pressures on
> >government and government officials. This is not to say that some
> >government programs are not occassionally well run or that some
> >government officials are not legitimately "trying their best", but
> >that the pressure on the whole system is to go towards maximum
> >corruption, just as the evolutionary pressure on organisms is to only
> >follow survival-prone strategies.
> 
> I would agree with you that there is a natural evolutionary trend
> towards bad government - however, I do not think of this process as
> inevitable.  The "eternal vigilance" quote I cited was merely my way
> of saying that "bad government" -will- come about if people do not
> protect their rights, because of this 'evolutionary pressure' of
> which you speak.  Therefore, it's very important for a society to
> resist this evolutionary pressure.

No society thus far has succeeded. Every government in history to date
has descended into corruption or warfare and fallen one way or another
within at most a few hundred years. I place my faith in what I can
see, not on what I can speculate about. Thus far no one has succeeded
in stopping this sort of decay, and I have no reason to believe the
U.S. is any different. "Eternal Vigilance" is a nice phrase, but it
doesn't appear that its ever happened. Its fine to say that it would
be nice for the people to guard their own rights -- but since they
never do, one might as well talk about how it would be nice if
everyone was morally perfect.

> There will always be people out there who will attempt to encroach
> on our liberties - sometimes they will succeed, sometimes they will
> fail.  It depends on how much support they have and how much
> resistance they encounter.

They've never failed -- thats the thing. France has had five or six or
seven governments since its revolution depending on how you count
them. Italy's government was barely a few years old following the last
war when it became nothing more than a graft generator. Of all the
nations of Europe, only England in some sense can be said to have
survived more than the last sixty or seventy years without a major
change of government -- and it might be said that England's government
changed radically following the reforms of the last century and the
Parliament Act of 1911. (Well, some of the Scandanavian countries are
also partial exceptions, but not especially big ones.) Europe is
considered the "advanced" part of the workd, ladies and gentlemen.

The U.S.'s record of surviving over 200 years without a major upheaval
is quite an unusual thing.

> It is up to the people of a country to resist bad government -
> otherwise, although they will be the victims of bad government, they
> will have contributed to bringing it upon themselves.

But the people almost never resist. Usually, they want the bad
government -- it needs them to survive.