The government causes unemployment

American government enforces the unnatural conditions of unemployment and homelessness. Most people are unaware of this and can not even imagine how the government would do such a thing. Today I will attempt to explain unemployment.

Let us begin with the fact that long term unemployment is a new phenomenon:

Read any account of economic history from the late Middle Ages through the 19th century and try to find any evidence of the existence of unemployment. You won’t find it. Why is that? Because long-term unemployment is a fixture of the modern world created by the interventionist state. “We” tried to cure it and “we” ended up doing the opposite. ~ Lew Rockwell

We live in a world where there are always many more things that need to be done than there is time to do them. I could hire 100 men today and keep them busy for a month just getting me caught up if I could afford them.

It has always been true that there were more things to be done that we have people and time to do them —  and it will always be so. This means that there will always be jobs. Unemployment is a problem of getting those who need things done together with those who would like to work.

The essential problem is affordability. The government makes it very expensive for a business to hire new workers. In fact, it is so expensive to have workers that business is letting people go and even looking to use robots instead of people. The problem is getting worse and will continue to do so long as there are barriers to deal-making between those who would hire and those who would like to work.

It is not lack of work. Rather it is the cost of getting the work done. So what makes the cost of hiring people so high? Government is the reason that cost is so high.

Lew Rockwell once listed a few of the reasons the cost of employment is so high. This list is far from being exhaustive:

The high minimum wage that knocks out the first several rungs from the bottom of the ladder;

The high payroll tax that robs employees and employers of resources;

The laws that threaten firms with lawsuits should the employee be fired;

The laws that established myriad conditions for hiring beyond the market-based condition that matters: can he or she get the job done?;

The unemployment subsidy in the form of phony insurance that pays people not to work;

The high cost of business start-ups in the form of taxes and mandates;

The mandated benefits that employers are forced to cough up for every new employee under certain conditions;

The withholding tax that prevents employers and employees from making their own deals

The age restrictions that treat everyone under the age of 16 as useless;

The social security and income taxes that together devour nearly half of contract income;

The labor union laws that permit thugs to loot a firm and keep out workers who would love a chance to offer their wares for less.

 

The US could “be great again” if just these government interventions were eliminated. There would be employment for all who were able to work. Congress and the President could eliminate these barriers to employment easily.

Given a new laissez-faire approach; the hiring of new employees would be breath taking to behold. But some would object to this approach. What would be the objection to this approach? Many would say that we need “good paying jobs” and not just jobs. They would claim that being unemployed and dependent on government is much better to working for what you are worth.

There is no exploitation in a market-based labor contract. Humans would freely come to agreement based on their subjective view of the benefits of the proposed arrangement just as von Mises told us in “Human Action“.

Exploitation is violence or threat of violence implied in the negotiation of anything affecting the life worker or employer. So, everyone in our system is exploited by the government and the onerous regulations and laws that rob the unemployed of wages, businesses of opportunity to hire workers.

Everyone is robbed of opportunity. The government is the thief.

 

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A few thoughts on anarcho-magic of the communist “anarchists”

It has been a long time since I wrote a post concerning the socialist or communist wing of the anarchist movement. On twitter, a long time friend sent me a barrage of tweets on socialism and anarchy. I have copied the text of them, in order, here:

I saw this on Twitter:

To identify as an anarchist/communist is to identify as anti-capitalist, racism is little more than an…..

…expression of the competition for wage-labour, and as we know the condition for capital is wage-labour.

The issue for me as an anarchist is not the color of your skin, but the fact that you are……..

………force to sell your labour power to exist.

When the condition for capital, wage-labour, has been reduced to activity sans wage,..

……..truly equality will be within our grasp.

The means of production are so vast; the need to trade has been largely rendered superfluous.

Without the need to trade, wage-labour could easily be relegated to the dust bin.

Promoting identity politics and political correctness to the level of wage-labour as an issue relative to..

equality is both misguided and juvenile at best. Frankly I find it preposterous.

This fellow was in a discussion with a Social Justice Warrior as I understand it, telling him that racism was of little concern as wage slavery was the important consideration. As you can see, his idea is that if one sells his labor for wages (money) then that is a total horror and the man is a slave.

Rothbard once observed:

And when the left-anarchists can be pressed for an answer, the response is disturbing indeed. Take for example one of our most distinguished socialist-anarchists, Professor Noam Chomsky. Professor Chomsky has recently expressed a great deal of worry about the recent rise of our “right-wing” libertarian movement; apparently he is – I am afraid unrealistically – concerned that we might succeed in abolishing the State before the State has succeeded in abolishing private property! Secondly, Chomsky has written that the anarcho-capitalist society would constitute “the greatest tyranny the world has ever known.” (What, Noam? Greater than Hitler? Than Genghis Khan?)

Whether or not anarcho-capitalism would be tyrannical is here irrelevant; the problem is that, in so expressing his horror at the possible results of complete freedom, Professor Chomsky reveals that he is not really an “anarchist” at all, indeed that he prefers statism to an anarcho-capitalist world. That of course is his prerogative, and scarcely unusual, but what is illegitimate is for this distinguished linguist to call himself an “anarchist.”

I had someone say to me on Twitter that the large corporations would “dominate” us and become our masters in the absence of government. Does she not know of how many corporations have lost out in the competitive race due to the customer’s whims?

Where the hell is the A&P grocery chain that was the largest and most powerful in the nation when I was born? Were is Florida’s dominate drug store chain that was called Eckerds? Heck, I am not sure of the spelling any more they have been gone so long.

Dominate us? Walmart has no army to make me buy from them. I have not been inside one of their stores in years and they can’t do a thing about it. I prefer on-line Amazon to Walmart or Target either one. At one time IBM was the only maker of computers that any business would buy from. There was even a saying back then, “no one ever got fired because they bought IBM”. Do they even make computers any more? What happened to them? Does anyone still use a Zerox copy machine? Corporations come and go.

Thomas DiLorenzo once listed a few of socialism’s dirty secrets:

  1. Socialism has always and everywhere been an economic disaster, and every honest scholar knows this. After seventy years of socialism, the Soviet economy was barely 5% of the U.S. economy, despite the false assertions of pro-socialist economists like Paul Samuelson, who wrote in the 1988 edition of his famous textbook that the Soviet economy would exceed the U.S. economy by the year 2000.

  2. You cannot fix socialism with smarter government planners or plans. Socialism cannot work because the rational economic calculation is impossible without private property, free-market prices, the profit-and-loss market feedback mechanism, and economic freedom in general.

  3. The ostensible goal of socialism – egalitarianism – is at war with human nature because all human beings are unique in thousands of different ways. The only kind of “equality” that socialism has ever created is equality of misery and poverty.

  4. Socialism generates far more societal inequality than economic freedom does. In all socialist societies the politically-connected elite live lives of luxury while nearly everyone else is equally impoverished.  In democratic socialist Venezuela today the economy has been ruined by socialism while the daughter of the late Hugo Chavez, the father of Venezuelan socialism, is reportedly worth $4.5 billion.

  5. The worst kind of people – the most immoral, corrupt, cynical, uncaring, and brutal – rise to the top under socialism because socialism is all about forcing people to abandon their own plans for their own lives and complying with mandatory government plans instead. It is no accident, in other words, that socialism is associated with such violent thugs as Stalin, Hitler, Mussolini, and Mao.

  6. Fascism was just another variety of socialism. The word “Nazi” was an acronym for national socialism. The German socialists distinguished themselves from the Russian socialists by calling their variety of socialism “national” as opposed to “international.”

  7. It is a myth that Scandinavian socialism has been successful. Swedish capitalism was extremely successful in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  The Swedes began living off of the fruits of capitalist prosperity by adopting a version of democratic socialism in the 1950s.  As a result, there was not a single net new job created there from 1955 to 1995.

  8. Nineteenth-century socialism was “government ownership of the means of production,” but it now includes the welfare state progressive income taxation and the strangulation of capitalism with regulation and taxation. The welfare state has destroyed the work ethic of millions; destroyed millions of families; caused a 400% increase in out-of-wedlock births in America since 1960; and transformed millions into lifelong beggars and wards of the state.

  9. Government-run healthcare systems – medical care socialism – is like all other government enterprises in that it operates with all the efficiency of the Post Office or Department of Motor Vehicles and all the compassion of the IRS. Anything as important as medical care should never be put in the hands of politicians and bureaucrats.

  10. The worse pollution problems on the planet for the past century or more have been in the socialist countries, as documented by books with titles like Ecocide in the USSR.  After the collapse of socialism the world learned that, in addition to being economic basket cases, socialist countries were also ecological cesspools.

These facts about socialism concern the typical socialism of the State rather than the magical thinking of so-called socialist-anarchists but collectivism is collectivism no matter what you call it. There has never been socialism without the state because it takes force, guns, and coercion to enforce the lunacy of socialism.