quinta-feira, novembro 08, 2012

Furacões e Janelas Partidas (7)

No seguimento de Furacões e Janelas Partidas (6), Storm Economics in One Lesson por Jeffrey Tucker:
.. No matter how many economists tell us that the storm will inspire all kinds of new and wonderful things, the first impression will remain true. This storm has been a disaster and a serious blow to the economy when we least needed it.

At the same time, the storm should remind everyone who romanticizes about the wonders of nature that there is a more fundamental truth: the whole history of humanity has mostly consisted in finding ever more effective ways to diminish the nature’s threat. First came shelter, then came clothes, then came tools to kill animals for our own use, then came transportation to overcome the limits of nature so that we could travel fast on land and water.

It’s true with every advance: indoor heating, air conditioning, indoor plumbing, the washing machine, chemicals to kill pests, medical advances to keep killer bacteria at bay. To a very great extent, it is the struggle away from nature that defines the idea of progress. It is only once the elements have been mastered that we can afford to think of the environment around us as a friend.

These are things we can learn during times of natural disaster. They are the same things we should know before the natural disaster. Only people know what’s best for themselves. Only markets can deliver goods and services. Only property owners know how to assess risk. As for politicians and bureaucrats, they care only about themselves.

Governments do vast damage in normal times, and vastly more precisely when it is commonly believed that they really need to act. In all times and places, people who are determined to build and sustain a life for themselves are inhibited only by the actions of powerful governments.

.. the political elites are not very useful in times of crisis, and, in fact, are frequently worse than useless. Storm preparation and storm survival is our job, not theirs.

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