When all you have is a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. When it comes to “jobs,” our politicians prove the truth of this adage over and over. They think that they have to “do something,” or at least “look busy” providing “leadership.”
Wrong — unless they take the lead to get out of the way.
Alas, few have the courage for that kind of leadership.
Republican politicians — fearing “looking bad” — are, even now, floating various “plans” to create “jobs.”
“I thought it was incumbent on me to at least say . . . ‘We’re working on a plan,’” says one incumbent.
Trouble is, whatever plan he or his colleagues put up to counter the president’s absurdities, odds are that it, too, will not work.
The trouble with markets right now is uncertainty. Several sectors went bust, and it’s not easy to get progress started again . . . especially when the government keeps cooking up game-changers. Solutions. “Fixes.” Political machinations — subsidies or regulations or any of the usual tools in the politicians’ tool belt — just increase uncertainty, muddying up the recovery.
The neat thing about markets is that none of us need to know how, exactly, to order the “economy” for order to be discovered. It works out. This is old wisdom, but even actual experimentation has shown that this is the case.
The economy is not a mess of boards half-nailed down. The last thing it needs is more hammering from politicians.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.