Friday, September 16th, 2011
There is not one day lately that we do not hear an angry anchorman/woman on TV or radio in Quebec (the land of the compassionates…) complaining about the problems in health care, education, infrastructures, transport, corruption, etc. On one hand, the thing that amazes me is that they complain and get into arguments with ministers and bureaucrats (they have a lot of patience to even entertain a conversation with these people) and on the other hand, they will go and advocate asking more money from the mining industry because “it’s OUR resources”. They just had an argument with a minister or bureaucrat because he was giving his usual PR spin and you want to give him more money? Does that make sense? Oh and yes, this argument that it is OUR resources. There is no “OUR” – there are only stakeholders who can profit directly: the company (what’s left), the bureaucrats/politicians who deal directly with those companies and the government apparel. Let’s do a test: if you think it’s YOURS: go and try to get a gold nugget out of those mines and see if it’s yours.
But you see, like so many people who can’t think straight about the role of the state and freedom, they still believe in the “government benevolent role”. It is just a matter of getting the bureaucracies to work better (the Toyota way in public health care!). They think it is just a question of tweaking it, hire the right people, the right leader, the right this or that. Yes, more money from the miners will shorten the waiting times in hospital and increase the number of doctors. Go on and believe that.
When you tell them that the problem is the government being in many areas where it should not be – they think you are an extremist who eat little children for breakfast. The subject of the day here in Quebec is corruption. Yes, corruption in the wonderful world of construction. You see it is very simple; corruption goes hand in hand with government interventions. No government involved in roads and infrastructures – nobody to corrupt. The report that leaked yesterday on the fact that construction and engineering firms go heavy on the extras to recycle those funds into electoral campaigns had all the commentators very excited. They are shocked and again blast ministers and bureaucrats for being such naughty people, that “something” should be done, etc. This looks strange to me because this is the equivalent of asking Al Capone why he doesn’t go and get a decent job and stop killing people. Electoral campaigns each 4-5 years are expensive you know and democracies are, like financial newsletter veteran Doug Casey likes to say, “Mob rules in sport jackets”.
Fiddling with bureaucracies is like rearranging chairs on the Titanic.