Week of the Golden Goose Fairy Tale (part 2)

Posted on December 13, 2011


This week we are considering the Grimm Brothers’ Fairy Tale, The Goose That Laid the Golden Eggs. This Fairy Tale describes what happens when an impatient farmer wants more Golden Eggs more rapidly and consequently splits open his Goose to find them. Of course, none are to be found. So, after eating the Goose, he is left, as expected, with nothing to chew on but his pride and imprudence. (from Eating the rich)

A close reading of American history reveals FDR as a President obsessed with destroying everything America ever promised – free markets, free individuals, balance of powers. Worse, his illicit designs are even still indelibly stamped upon nearly every word of modern American political rhetoric and the bulwark of assumption sets upon which such rhetoric is built.

For example, our Declaration of Independence famously declares that “All Men Are Created Equal.” Through a sophistry pungent with malodorous perfidy, FDR transmogriphied the guarantee of equal rights for everyone into a universal right to equal outcomes for everyone. In his own 1944 “Second Bill of Rights,” FDR declared that the equal rights guaranteed by the Constitution had “proved inadequate to assure us equality in the pursuit of happiness.” Instead, Roosevelt declared that Americans should each be guaranteed, among other things, the right to a job, with a “living wage,” the right to housing, and the right to medical care.

Curiously, Roosevelt never explained how such rights were to be enforced without depriving others of the rights to their own private property. For example, how could such rights be procured without presuming person A is granted a controlling right to person B’s labor? And if we are all to agree that there should exist among us persons who hold controlling rights to our own private property (which the Second Bill of Rights intended to guarantee) who among us shall be deemed worthy to decide who gets what and how much? There are none such.

Failing to understand the Golden Goose Predicament, Roosevelt ignored the fact that life is always about trade-offs: If you want more of this you have to settle for less of that – the principle economists call TANSTFL – “there ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.” FDR’s most glittering heir, Obama, believes, as did his ancestor, that both money and rights can be woven from whole cloth. Consequently, if the Goose isn’t laying Golden Eggs fast enough, we can borrow against the presumption that the Goose will at some point in the future lay more and faster tomorrow. Worse, Roosevelt failed, as do his offspring, to understand the ultimate moral of the Golden Goose Predicament: Killing the Golden Goose precludes the laying of any more Golden Eggs.

History has proven, repeatedly, in every case, that when Society pampers and protects its Golden Geese, it gets more Golden Eggs more rapidly, and most everyone benefits. This “Eggs for All” phenomenon, to mix metaphors, is similar to the 1980’s insight that “a rising tide lifts all boats.” To understand this, one has to flip from perceiving the rich as lazy jerks who don’t deserve their riches, or who stole their riches, or who just got lucky, to perceiving the rich as unwitting producers of wealth for us all.

It is not too hard to do this if we merely consider the world as it is. The rich (or at least their advisers) are NOT stupid. Assuming this, then, it is not hard to understand that the rich will work to protect their wealth and they will usually have enough wealth to protect it very well – in purchasing the services of accountants, lawyers, bankers, politicians, “favors,” off-shore banks, etc., etc.

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