Pundits From Our World and an Alternate Dimension Look at Libertarianism, Like and Loathe


Ross Douthat at the New York Times admits that while too much libertarianism would be too much, a little more than we got could be just right.

Meanwhile Ezra Klein at the Washington Post reports from an alternate universe apparently without loose Federal Reserve monetary policy, revolving doors between big finance and big government, and a history of "too big to fail bailouts." And in a further sci-fi twist that really starts to get a bit much, it's simultaneously a world where the government doesn't spend half of health care dollars, doesn't shape the costs or extent of insurance coverage with its tax laws and regulations, doesn't artificially limit the number of people who can sell medical services, and where people buying health care know or even have any way of knowing the costs of what they are paying for beforehand.

From that world, he blames libertarianism for the financial crisis and out of control health care costs.

Klein does know–mentions it four times in about 800 words–that rich people and their influence are benefiting from and pushing libertarian ideas in that world, and I suppose this one as well. I feel for him: If only, if only, there were any power and money pushing the idea that government should spend more and do more. Well, that could make an interesting little sci-fi story in and of itself, I guess.