Juan Peron of Argentina

One of my favorite economics bloggers is Scott Grannis who writes Calafia Beach Pundit.  On Febuary 10, 2012 Scott wrote Obama: America’s Peron, comparing some of the policies of this administration with the policies of Peron during a period in Argentina which the author witnessed.


Aside from the ravages of inflation and periodic depressions—I recall calculating that industrial production per capita had declined almost 35% during one decade—the other thing that stands out in my memories of Argentina is seeing newspaper headlines report almost daily that the president had issued a decree: one day ordering some company to lower its prices, another day allowing another company to raise its prices, another day announcing the new price of gasoline, and yet another day declaring that all workers would receive a 10% increase in pay to compensate for the higher prices. The president spent most of his time managing the economy, and he did that by receiving an endless number of people in his office who petitioned for the right to raise prices, or who petitioned for relief from the fallout of one of his previous diktats. It was government by presidential decree, and it was the closest I hope I’ll ever come to living in a socialist economy.

Giving too much power to politicians (regardless of party affiliation) only ends up corrupting the entire process, because politicians end up selling favors, which in the end is an irresistible temptation. A tax hike here, a tax break there; higher prices here, lower prices there; a mandate here, an exemption from the mandate there. And so on, as we gradually lose our freedoms and our markets stop functioning efficiently. It’s a very sad commentary on the state of the American economy and its politics. We really need to change; we really need less government, not more.

In his post Grannis also quotes Chip Mellor from a WSJ article on January 7, 2012, Litigating for Liberty:

There continues to be the false premise that the problem in politics is too much money, when in fact the problem is too much government for sale … these campaign finance laws are really treating only a symptom, not the disease. Until you get to the root cause, which is too much government, you are really not doing anything productive and in many cases you are doing harm.