Let me tell you a funny story about young Albert and Wallace the lion. The final lines of the poem surprisingly express a profound economic truth which gets too often ignored by government officials. As it happens, we can learn quite a bit if we care to look below the surface of simple tales. So here’s the story.
We all know that politicians by and large are corrupt. They steal from the public by a variety of means, ranging from kickbacks on purchases (defense equipment is a favorite) to allocation of scarce resources (radio spectrum and land are examples.) But as I have argued before on this blog, public corruption is a consequence of government control of the economy which is mandated by Nehruvian socialism. Being in control of the economy is hugely privately profitable. The profits from public office are well publicized. That’s one side of the equation of profit and loss. What about the loss?