Thursday, February 17, 2011

Ezra Klein Explains Our Government

Ezra Klein is getting a lot of buzz for having said:
Literally. If you look at how the federal government spends our money, it’s an insurance conglomerate protected by a large, standing army.
Link.  Ir's a clever line and it has the added merit of being true.  David A. Moss' When All Else Fails, subtitled "Government as the Ultimate Risk Manager," is a superb exegesis on exactly that point.  It is tempting --but pretty clearly inaccuraate--to try to apply this label to all governments.  More tempting still is to try to figure what sort of label applies to which.  Dutch Republic?  Joint stock company.  Venice?  Gang of pirates.  And so forth.

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