“D’oh!” is a catchphrase used by the fictional character Homer Simpson, from the long-running American animated sitcom The Simpsons (“D’oh was recently added to the 700,000 word Oxford English Dictionary).
If Homer were becoming politically aware, he might ponder the mass movement in the United States towards a centrally-controlled economy, with people voting predominantly for a country where a small circle of rich, powerful politicians along with their wealthy lobbyists and campaign contributors, bankers and other parasites are able to gain massively more power and wealth by hoodwinking the people (as so many societies around the world have done for hundreds of years) into the delusion that money and power is better put to use funneled into the hands (and pockets) of the few rich and powerful rather than left in the hands of the ordinary people who created that wealth.
If Homer were to contemplate some of the more ridiculous ideas politicians and the media have been able to program into the heads of the voting masses, here are some “D’oh” questions he might ask:
- If the government really does a better job at providing services than private companies, why do they need laws to compel people to use their services by force? Why not compete in the open market and let people choose for themselves based on the service’s superior quality?
- If the minimum wage helps people, why not raise it to $50 per hour and wipe out poverty overnight?
- If government can create jobs, why don’t they create a good job for everyone and wipe out unemployment and poverty overnight?
- If centrally-controlled economies are superior to free market capitalism, then why did so many people risk getting killed (and actually get killed) trying to climb the Berlin Wall to escape from East Berlin (central economic planning) to West Berlin (a capitalist, free market)? Why didn’t they need any guards on the West side of the Wall? Why wasn’t anyone trying to “escape” the unfair, unequal capitalist system back into the income equality of East Berlin? Why did they need to build a wall in the first place?
- If centrally-controlled economies are superior to free market capitalism, then why are there armed guards to prevent North Koreans (central economic planning) from escaping to South Korea (a capitalist, free market)? Why doesn’t any South Korean want to escape the oppressive capitalist regime of South Korea for the almost perfect income equality of North Korea?
- If centrally-controlled economies are superior to free market capitalism, then why did so many millions of people from all over the globe immigrate to the United States in the 19th century, a free market, capitalist society with extremely low taxes and few regulations on business, despite the fact the U.S. government in the 1800’s was tiny and provided almost no government services? (No free schools, no New Deal, no Great Society, no welfare, no free health care, no Social Security, no unemployment insurance, no Medicare or Medicaid.) And why, after getting established, did these immigrants then send for their entire families to also immigrate to the U.S.?
- If government programs act to improve the lot of the common person, then why was the period of the 19th century in the United States a period of time in which the very poorest in the country (as well as the average person) experienced by far the greatest increase in their standard of living and wealth, when compared to any other period of time in any society in human history? A period when pure capitalism ruled and government played no role in helping people?
- If government programs truly help alleviate poverty, then why is it that the more money governments spend on social services, the higher percentage of people fall into poverty? Why, when spending over $2.1 trillion a year on the War on Poverty ($134,000 per poor household per year), are the number of people too poor to support themselves and needing to receive government aid today at a 50 year high?
- If the Federal Reserve acts to stabilize the economy and the money supply, why has the purchasing value of the dollar dropped to four cents since the Fed was formed?
- If the Federal Reserve acts to stabilize the economy and the money supply, then why have their been so many huge recessions and depressions since it was formed (compared to the century beforehand)?
- If the Federal Reserve is a government institution then why does its own website say that it’s owned by private banks?
- If greedy, profit-seeking corporate executives, lawyers, bankers and lobbyists are the scum of the earth, then what reason is there to believe that once they become Congresspeople, get appointed to a Cabinet position or other powerful federal bureaucratic job, or get elected President, that they completely change personality, motivation and ethics and become “selfless public servants”, seeking only to help people?