More Government Means Less Trust


Writing at Forbes, University of Chicago law professor Richard Epstein explains how bigger government undermines the public's trust in government:

Behind the current disquiet lies an implicit marginal calculation that makes good economic sense. Much of the modern rhetoric, especially from the tone-deaf Obama White House, takes this form: "We did well with the previous increases in taxation and regulation, so why worry about the next round?" The answer is that too much of a good thing becomes a bad thing. Yet like a bad genie, once released from the bottle, big government is difficult to stuff back in….

And so we can see the connection in the end. As big government gets still bigger, the confidence ordinary people have in its institutions grows weaker. That weakness reflects itself not only in a political resentment to the political parties in power. It also manifests itself in their gradual withdrawal from the market, manifested by a greater unwillingness to consume or to invest. With this skeptical mood, each expansionist move of the Obama administration is like feeding sugar to a diabetic.