I would like to comment further on the George Will piece in The Washington Post today. Because it is so puny in its thinking and so utterly sarcastic and condescending in its tone that I simply must.
I assume Will is going for a larger point here. I assume he is dragging out his analogy of the market that sells admission to entertainment events to attempt to advance the larger point that the free market is a beautiful giant unicorn with big lovely eyes and that only justly feeds upon a perfectly balanced supply and demand dynamic and that poops out lots and lots of yummy green munny, munny that trickles down all over all of our little heads.
Well. Earth to George Will. Most people don’t (usually) live in astrodomes. They live in houses. And drumming up the example of such a purely luxury economy as an example of how other economic systems, like, say, the mortgage market can make due without all that silly regulation is like sitting in a giant freezer and then saying see, there’s no global warming! Ridiculous, man.
And, goodness, one needs at least three ShamWow®* to wipe up the sarcasm Will has slopped all over his first graf. Then he switches gears and defers to his friend who, as PB mentioned, has seriously proposed “free market incentives” for donated organs#8212;who believes in the free market so fervently that he would trust it quite literally with every last one of our lives, abrogating control to it over medical professionals the most precious of medicine’s resources. When I first came across it I thought I was reading Jonathan Swift. If only.
Many, many years ago, there was this fellow called Aesop. They say he lived around 550 BCE. And he told this story about this guy who noticed that a goose he owned was laying golden eggs. So he started yelling at the thing to make more golden eggs. Soon, the goose was pooped and couldn’t give any up. So the guy cut the goose’s belly open so he could finally get at all of the goldeny goodness.
I think you know what happens next. That’s right. Rumors of a cash-strapped Bear Stearns causes a panicked run on the bank, and from there, all fucking hell breaks loose, and then pretty soon, more Americans report that it’s not so bad living in their Prii**.
But that shit is just a-okay with George F. Will, provided that everyone who wants to can buy tickets to sporting events in a completely unfettered marketplace.
George, what do you call a gas stove without a knob on the front to regulate the burners? You call it an EXPLOSION. And while you’re still lining up free-market yahoos who don’t mind auctioning off kidneys to use as examples to support your argument, America has just lived through an example more illustrative than one could dream up—AGAIN—that seems to indicate that, yes, a marketplace DOES require regulation. Hell, without government, a market can’t even actually exist.
Anyway, Mr. Will. Please have your tux dry-cleaned and try again next week. Perhaps you should simply write each week about baseball instead of about, you know, munny and stuff.
*Little-known fact: The plural of ShamWow® is ShamWow®.
**I do not actually know what is the plural of “Prius.”