The View From 1776
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
Parson Moyers’s Prevarication
Bill Moyers’s PBS presentation on Cleveland’s real estate foreclosure problem was a product, either of economic ignorance, or of deliberate distortion for political purposes.
Friday night’s Bill Moyers’ Journal on PBS placed the blame for Cleveland’s very real foreclosure problem on financial institutions’ greed, along with the Bush administration’s indifference to human suffering.
Applying the same analysis to the spread of AIDS, Parson Moyers might conclude that AIDS became a scourge because manufacturers of condoms were greedy. He would demand new Federal regulations to prevent AIDS, when, in fact, the root cause is immoral individuals’ rampant sexual promiscuity. If everyone had practiced sexual abstinence outside marriage, AIDS would be a minor footnote in medical journals.
Similarly, the underlying cause for the subprime mortgage meltdown and for the follow-on distress of foreclosures in places like Cleveland is the liberal-progressive-socialist welfare state and its array of entitlements financed by deficit spending, coupled with the infantile belief of borrowers, fostered by the liberal welfare state, that they are entitled to whatever they want, without first working and saving for it.
Ignoring the culpability of his own liberal-progressive-socialist cohort, Mr. Moyers blames all economic and social ills on private enterprise. Implicitly, in his world view, non-government action by individuals and businesses is motivated by anti-social greed, if not malice.
For this, the antidote always is additional Federal spending and more regulation. The repeated lesson of history