Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Feedback For FEE.org

Reply to reply on The Good Intentions Fallacy Is Driving Support for Democratic Socialism by Barry Brownstein

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If FEE was doing a good job disseminating information/knowledge, then you would thoroughly understand and love Hayek's argument (against command economies) that knowledge is decentralized/dispersed. As a group, FEE's readers have FAR more knowledge, including economics knowledge, than FEE itself (leadership + staff) has. As a group, FEE's readers have read FAR more books, including economics books, than FEE itself has. As a group, FEE's readers have done FAR more jobs, lived in FAR more countries and had FAR more life experiences than FEE itself. As a group, FEE's readers have FAR more eyeballs, ears and most importantly... brains.... than FEE itself. Thanks to consumer choice, market economies utilize/harness FAR more collective intelligence and information than command economies do. This is why markets succeed while socialism fails. It's a fact that right now FEE is not a market system... it is a socialist system. Therefore, FEE is failing to do a good job educating everybody about economics.

If you need additional proof that FEE is failing to do a good job, then here it is... you don't appreciate the difference between cheap signals (ie voting) and costly signals (ie spending). The fact that lots of people voted for prohibition, for example, informs us that it was popular, but it does not at all even remotely reveal the demand for prohibition. Demand can only be revealed by each and every consumer reaching into their own pocket and putting their own money where their mouth is. What was the demand for prohibition? We don't know. Consumers were not given the opportunity to spend their own money on prohibition.

On Netflix... what is the demand for nature show? Netflix does not know. It knows how many votes nature shows receive, it knows how many hours people spend watching them, but it doesn't actually know the demand for them.

Think about a "free" lunch. Just because lots of people will vote for a "free" lunch doesn't reveal the demand for the meal. Just because lots of people will line up and eat a "free" lunch doesn't reveal the demand for the meal.

Here's what a liberal wrote...

Hoover, in Hawley’s words, allowed for the New Deal to emerge because of his “reluctance to recognize that the private sector was inherently incapable of meeting the demand for social services on its own.” - Mike Konczal, The Voluntarism Fantasy

How could he possibly know what the demand is for welfare? Voting for welfare doesn't reveal the demand for it and neither does using it. The demand for welfare can only be known by giving Konczal, and all the other liberals, the opportunity to put their own money where their mouths/hearts are. When liberals are given the opportunity to decide how they divide their own dollars between welfare, public education and public healthcare then, and only then, will the demand for welfare truly be known.

When FEE's readers are given the opportunity to decide how they divide their donated dollars between articles about the Invisible Hand and articles about other topics then, and only then, will the demand for articles about the Invisible Hand truly be known.

1. As a group FEE's readers have FAR more intelligence/information than FEE itself does. It's a basic fact that two heads are better than one.

2. In order to fully harness/utilize the collective intelligence/information of its readers, FEE needs to give each and every reader the opportunity to put their money where their mouth is. It's a basic fact that actions speak louder than words.