Curing a disease by intensifying its causes

“War is a judgement that overtakes societies when they have been living upon ideas that conflict too violently with the laws governing the universe … Never think that wars are irrational catastrophes: they happen when wrong ways of thinking and living bring about intolerable situations.”
— Dorothy L Sayers.[1]

That quote is from E. F. Schumacher’s book Small is Beautiful [2] where he meditated upon the causes of the bind that humanity finds itself in and indeed is responsible for. He posited that it was lack of wisdom that impels people to ‘cure a disease by intensifying its causes.’ Here’s what he wrote:  Continue reading “Curing a disease by intensifying its causes”

What Should the Government Do?

In a comment baransam1 asks, “Should the government fund primary education, fund higher education, fund research in basic sciences?” The answer is “No, no, and no.” Emphatic no’s.

No for the same reason that the government should not be in the business of income and wealth redistribution. It should not be in the business of charity. It should not be in the business of taking care of the indigent, the sick and the victims of accident and natural disasters. The government should not be in the business of religious indoctrination, or indeed indoctrination of any kind. The government should not engage in commercial activities like transportation and communications. It should not run hospitals and hotels, clubs and cafes, factories and farms. It should not run banks and non-banking financial institutions.

The list of prohibitions — the “blacklist”– is too long. It is best to have a “whitelist” of what the government is allowed and required to do, and nothing beyond that.  Why? The answer is one word: violence.  Continue reading “What Should the Government Do?”