Barack Obama

When You Stop Laughing About Joe Biden Curing Cancer, Watch This Video About Gov't Successes

Barack Obama's parting "moon shot" in his State of the Union is inane, but there *are* ways to do government programs right.

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One of the great though unintentional laugh lines in President Obama's State of the Union address last night came when he tapped the country's longest-running punchline, Joe Biden, to head up a "new moonshot" that would "cure cancer."

As Peter Suderman astutely noted, "It's a dubious idea—and its indicative of both the problems with Obama's final State of the Union and the larger failures of his presidency." And that's simply from a metaphoric perspective. The moon landing was an engineering problem and hence nowhere nearly as complicated as dealing with cancer. And the idea of putting Joe Biden in charge of anything other than (maybe) free mustache rides or the uncomfortable nuzzling of children? Seriously, WTF?

But once all the laughter dies in sorrow, let's think seriously about the problem of delivering on large-scale government programs, whether we're talking about reaching the moon (or Mars), helping the Gulf coast rebuild after Hurricane Katrina, or improving traffic congestion in Southern California or in Boston. The fact is that people have less and less faith and confidence in government, for reasons that are pretty obvious: Government routinely overpromises and underdelivers, whether it's in terms of access to health care (or containing costs of same), improving education, or goosing house prices.

At first blush, cynicism (or is it realism?) toward government is an unalloyed win for libertarians. After all, we want less government, and the less people trust government, the less of it they'll demand, right?

As I've argued elsewhere, the answer is not as straightforward as we might think. In fact, polities with "low-trust" in government routinely clamor for more government.

[Read] the 2010 paper "Regulation and Distrust," written by Philippe Aghion, Yann Algan, Pierre Cahuc, and Andrei Shleifer and published in The Quarterly Journal of Economics. Drawing on World Values Survey data from the past several decades for over 50 countries, the authors help explain what they call "one of the central puzzles in research on political beliefs: Why do people in countries with bad governments want more government intervention?"

The authors make a distinction between "high-trust" and "low-trust" countries. In the former, most people have positive feelings about business and government and the general level of regulation is relatively low. In "low-trust countries," the opposite is true and citizens "support government regulation, fully recognizing that such regulation leads to corruption." As an example, they point to differing attitudes toward government-mandated wages in former socialist countries that transitioned to market economies. "Approximately 92 percent of Russians and 82 percent of East Germans favor wage control," they write, naming two low-trust populations. In Scandinavia, Great Britain, and North American countries, where there are higher levels of trust in the public and private sectors, less than half the population does. As a final kicker, Aghion et al. suggest that increased regulation sows yet more distrust, which in turn engenders more regulation.

Fear and distrust of government in America are at post-war highs. What if the size and scope of government, also at post-war highs by most measures, is growing not in spite of such attitudes but because of them?

The smart response from a libertarian perspective would be to lay out the conditions and contexts for legitimate and efficient deployment of government actions.

I'm not an anarchist, or even what might be called a "foundationalist libertarian." That is, I'm less interested in debating and enacting philosophically ideal versions of the size of the state. I'm a directional libertarian in that I want things to move in the right direction, toward more individual freedom and choice. Hence, I would prefer all drugs (including prescription drugs) to be fully legal and available to adults, but I'll take the legalization of pot as a good step in the right direction. I'd prefer that government get out of providing education, but I'm totally behind the idea of providing individual students and their parents a wider range of options right here and now via "backpack funding," charter schools, and similar measures. I don't think the state should be involved in marriage, but until it butts the hell out, it shouldn't discriminate against any two individuals who want to get hitched. To the extent that government provides welfare payments, they should be in cold, hard cash and not restricted forms such as housing vouchers or food stamps. You get the picture, right?

When it comes to large undertakings, the government should not only be held accountable for its failures but for its successes. And I think we libertarians should promote and support policies and mechanisms that are more likely to lead to success rather than failure. Which leads to less trust in government. Which might just in turn lead to more calls for government action.

While listening to Obama yammer on last night, I thought of the following 2009 interview Reason TV conducted with William D. Eggers and John O'Leary, author of If We Can Put a Man on the Moon: Getting Big Things Done in Government (both of them worked at Reason Foundation, the nonprofit that publishes this site, back in the 1990s). I hope you'll find it an interesting conversation (certainly their book is and I recommend grabbing a copy). Their controlling metaphor is the Apollo project and the insights they bring to bear on what it takes for government to succeed are compelling. And they just might be the preconditions for actually getting to a point where we trust government enough to do certain things well so we can start pruning it back in all the places it shouldn't be.

NEXT: 'Hidden Rise in Violent Crime' in U.K. Has More to Do With Data Manipulation Than 'Growth in Violence Against Women'

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  1. Fear and distrust of the government were much higher in the 1970s than now. People now love big government (we have the biggest government in human history by pretty much any objective measure). They just fear and distrust the people in the other party running things.

    1. Principals not principles.

      1. If only we put the RIGHT PEOPLE into POWAH in Government Almighty, THEN it would all be just mahvelous, and the Guv Almighty could tell us when to poop and when to blow our noses, and we’d ALL be better off!!!

        (That’s why I am planning my run for Intergalactic Pooh-Bah as we speak).

        1. Intergalactic

          Can I drive your tour bus?

  2. A country capable of putting a man on the moon should be able to put a man on the moon.

    /some dude

    1. There are two kinds of countries:

      Those that use the metric system, and those that put a man on the moon!

      1. Liberia and Burma put men on the moon?

        1. Liberia is just being very sneaky about it.

  3. First you attack Cruz and now lunchbox joe? If Cruz isn’t nominated, Joe is our last serious chance of showing people the libertarian moment has arrived.

    1. I have serious concerns that Joe might nuke Iran, just to set the tone for his administration.

      1. He might nuke Iraq by mistake.

        1. “Is the President nuking Russia?”

          “Nah, we just put a big red button with a klaxon on his desk. It doesn’t do anything, but he’s happier than a retard with a roll of tin foil.”

        2. Dude, we’re talking about uncle Joe here, he might nuke Sacramento by mistake… Hey, I might be able to support him afterall!

          1. Throw in Fresno and you’ve got a deal!

            1. Uncle Joe: What, Sacramento is in Cali? Fuck, I thought it was in Idaho!

              Pentagon: Damnit Joe, it’s Iran we’re supposed to hit, not Idaho!

              Uncle Joe: Ok, let me make the call… Hey, I got a map here, they said Iowa… let me see, Des Moines, fire away!

      2. Nah, he’ll be fine.

      3. He may nuke Iraan, Texas, by mistake.

        1. Yep. The highway signs for that exit are pretty big. There’s also Paris, and Italy Texas.

      4. Uncle Joe won’t be nuking anyone…

        He will be too busy being all creepy hands and stuff to bother with that sort of nonsense…

        1. You know as he gazes out the White House window in that top pic, he’s wanking. And what is the object of his eroticism? Bo, the Obama’s dog crapping on the White House Lawn…Or maybe its Michelle doing the same.

        2. You know as he gazes out the White House window in that top pic, he’s wanking. And what is the object of his eroticism? Bo, the Obama’s dog crapping on the White House Lawn…Or maybe its Michelle doing the same.

    2. it’s actually a testament to the libertarian moment that sick fetish perverts like you can choose to wear horse blinkers all day and still get along in society.

      1. My tunnel vision always seems to get the best of me,

  4. BIDEN: “Cure cancer with Jello shots? I’ll get started at once!”

    1. I think that this suggestion by Obama was simply his attempt to get a job writing at The Onion after he is out of office. I also think that it the suggestion that Biden be in charge of this is just as funny as any of the other Biden stories that the Onion likes to trot out.

  5. there *are* ways to do government programs right

    I hear the gentle humming of a wood chipper in the background…

    1. As a note to any Assistant District Attorneys in the audience, I have it on good authority that the above statement represents juvenile bluster (though not Juvenile Bluster, he’s different) and not an actual threat.

      1. Preet is an Assistant US Atty (fed prosecutor); DAs are state employees.

        1. Again I am schooled!

  6. I’m not an anarchist, or even what might be called a “foundationalist libertarian.” That is, I’m less interested in debating and enacting philosophically ideal versions of the size of the state. I’m a directional libertarian in that I want things to move in the right direction, toward more individual freedom and choice. Hence, I would prefer all drugs (including prescription drugs) to be fully legal and available to adults, but I’ll take the legalization of pot as a good step in the right direction. I’d prefer that government get out of providing education, but I’m totally behind the idea of providing individual students and their parents a wider range of options right here and now via “backpack funding,” charter schools, and similar measures. I don’t think the state should be involved in marriage, but until it butts the hell out, it shouldn’t discriminate against any two individuals who want to get hitched. To the extent that government provides welfare payments, they should be in cold, hard cash and not restricted forms such as housing vouchers or food stamps. You get the picture, right?

    Christ Avalokiteshvara! It’s the whole “sudden” vs. “gradual” enlightenment Rinzai/Soto debate, but in libertarian form.

    1. Has a woodchipper Buddha nature?

      1. How much wood would the Buhhda chip if the Buddha couls chip wood?

    2. Q: How many Zen buddhists does it take to change a light bulb?

      1. None, the light bulb must change from within.

        1. “No, my child, it takes one, the novice, who needs to go to Home Depot before it closes.”

          1. A: Three – one to change it, one to not-change it and one to both change and not-change it.

            1. Does someone have to observe the event for one to be true?

      2. Yellow.

    3. “It’s the whole “sudden” vs. “gradual” enlightenment Rinzai/Soto debate”

      I thought there were two schools of Buddhism, the one where they pose unintelligible riddles and the one where they beat you up.

      1. You’re thinking Irish Catholicism, and they’re both the same school.

  7. I’ve heard this ‘new moonshot’ phrase in relation to curing cancer several times this week. Doesn’t everyone mean “moneyshot”?

    1. Sex as a preventative for (cervical) cancer is Bernie’s turf.

      1. Joe Biden would like to know more.

    2. No it means, hey, listen to this: A moonshot! Whoa, ooh, aah! Moonshot! Doesn’t that sound awesome! We’re doing something! Ok, we got that huge tax payer funded budget increase, now go back to killing rats, you worthless lackeys.

      M-O-O-N, that spells government incompetence.

      1. +1 Tom Cullen

    3. They’re trying to latch on to the possibility of a general treatment/treatments being on the horizon for multiple forms of cancer. Particularly the immunological approaches. If those pay off, by golly, Obama will have done it by mentioning it in a speech.

      To be fair to Crazy Joe, he did lose a son to glioblastoma, so I’m sure this is something he might really focus on, though that’s unlikely to change anything except maybe awareness of that particular kind of tumor.

      1. Duke University’s work with modified poliovirus to specifically attack glioblastoma is pretty damned cool. If I were less lazy, I’d actually provide a link.

        1. I saw that. Interesting.

          1. Show-off.

            1. Not at all–I just happened to see the 60 Minutes segment on this. Crazy stuff. And Duke’s polio trial is just one of many immunological approaches. It’s pretty exciting, especially considering it’s happening on the wrong side of the blood-brain barrier.

              1. I was referencing your link-embedding.

                1. Oh. That’s done by magic.

      2. Cannabis has cured some glioblastomas. And that in children (and adults).

        1. Glioblastoma multiforme, if I remember correctly, has a 100% mortality rate.

          1. There are a decent number of people who don’t have recurrence or go many years without it. Treatment has improved quite a bit in the last decade, too. The statistics are all over the place because some tumors are inoperable, some patients have other conditions that make treatment tough, etc. It’s not a death sentence for everyone.

            1. It almost always eventually gets you. You are correct that treatment has improved, but it still sucks. The problem is that it has basically spread along all the white matter tracts by the time it’s visible on any form of neuroimaging, so you can’t get the whole thing surgically.

              Harvey Cushing tried taking out the whole hemisphere to try to prevent recurrence, but it would still come back.

              So we need a medical/immunologic/viral cure. Get on that, VP Biden! Time’s a-wastin’!

      3. Oh, I didn’t know it was cancer his son died from.

        I may have been to quick to mock him over this.

        Yet I doubt he will be able to cure cancer.

        1. Lots of people who can’t do shit about curing cancer lost relatives to cancer. Mock away.

        2. Socialism comes about as close as possible to curing cancer. When life expectancy at birth was 40 years, only the lucky few lived long enough to develop cancer.

      4. I’m consulting for someone with a product in just that niche, Divina Biotech.

  8. I love the video title ‘If we can put a man on the moon…’

    Ok, let me start with, we haven’t been able to put a man on the moon in over 50 fucking years. We can’t even get out of low orbit. Behold the wonder of government bureaucracy.

    1. I still not entirely clear why we went in the first place*. I thought it was just ’cause ‘Murica.

      *assuming one doesn’t believe the whole thing was an elaborate hoax, which seems like it would be more work than just actually going to the moon.

      1. I still not entirely clear why we went in the first place*.

        No. And you probably don’t really want to know the reason.

        Essentially, it was Cold War dick whacking. The idea wasn’t even bullshit “national pride”. It was a diplomatic way of showing the world “If we can put our missile on the moon and bring it back, you really don’t want to know what we can do with our missiles and your sorry ass.”.

        1. So:

          ‘Cause Murica!!

        2. It’s a little more complicated than that. The Soviets were kicking our ass. We got blindsided (and freaked out), by Sputnik, then they beat us to first human in space and first human to orbit earth. President Kennedy then set the really ambitious goal of beating the Soviets to the moon. The Soviets (including later Russian efforts) never got a human beyond earth orbit.

          However, it is also possible that trying to keep up with us in the space race was the beginning of the bankrupting of the USSR. We managed to have both a moon landing and washing machines.

          1. Why do you think we freaked out over Sputnik or Soviet Earth orbit? Why do you think Kennedy felt the need to set the goal? National pride? Shits and giggles? The Soviets doing those things sent the message to the world that they had missile superiority over us. At that point, an ambitious goal was about the only thing that was going to set the balance in favor of the U.S.

        3. That sounds ghey, man…..

        4. That and JFK quickly decided Mutually Assured Destruction, foreign meddling and missile crises were a bringdown.

      2. Sometimes I wonder whether the moon project was a giant military space research project hidden in plain sight.

        1. That’s no moon project…

    2. It’s only been 43 years. But somehow we don’t have a rocket as good as the Saturn V yet.

      1. Damnit! You ruined my hyperbole!

      2. Thanks, CE.

  9. I was traveling between West Palm Beach and Boca Raton the other day (south of Jupiter) in Florida, when a tire blew out. Checking my spare, I found that it, too, was flat. My only option was to flag down a passing motorist and get a ride to the next town.
    The first vehicle to stop was an old man in a van. He yelled out the window, “Need a lift?”
    “Yes, I sure do,” I replied.
    “You a Republican or Democrat,” asked the old man.
    “Republican,” I replied.
    “Well, you can just go to Hell,” yelled the old man as he sped off.
    Another guy stopped, rolled down the window, and asked me the same question.
    Again, I gave the same answer, “Republican.”
    The driver gave me the finger and drove off. I thought it over and decided that maybe I should change my strategy, since this area seemed to be overly political and there appeared to be few Republicans. The next car to stop was a red convertible driven by a beautiful blonde. She smiled seductively and asked if I was a Republican or Democrat.
    “Democrat!” I shouted.
    “Hop in!” replied the blonde.

    1. Driving down the road, I couldn’t help but stare at the gorgeous woman in the seat next to me, the wind blowing through her hair, perfect breasts and a short skirt that continued to ride higher and higher up her thighs.
      Finally, I yelled, “Please stop the car.” She immediately slammed on the brakes and as soon as the car stopped, I jumped out.
      “What’s the matter?” she asked.
      “I can’t take it anymore,” I replied. “I’ve only been a Democrat for five minutes and already I want to screw somebody.”

      1. I larfed.

  10. In more important news, I think there are still a few dollars left in my 401ks. So clearly, we’re in need of some more “recovery”. Dow down over 300.

    1. Not to worry, Recovrg Summer VII: Recovery in Space is coming.

      1. What we need is a recovery moonshot!

    2. Recovery Summer VIII: The Recovening is right around the corner

    3. This was inevitable. The markets were inflated by money that didn’t exist, they couldn’t stay up. You didn’t actually lose anything, you just recognized reality. If you’d done it earlier, you could’ve gotten in on gold at its low point last year.

      1. Um…isn’t gold pretty much at its 52 week low, give or take 4%? If you believe $1000 was a good price, $1040 isn’t much difference.

        I have precious metals in my portfolio, but I am not very bullish on it right now. The dollar is expected to strengthen in the next year, and that won’t be good for Gold.

        1. Gold has been increasing this entire year. And expected by whom? The people who thought oil was going to stay at $100?

    4. Hmm… time to search the news for asset forfeiture, anti-money laundering and other prohibitionist putches.

  11. We can put a man on the moon, but I still have to manually dry myself after a shower.

    1. Great business idea. You know those air hand dryers in public restrooms? Make a giant one that installs over a shower and comes on automatically when the water is shut off. Not sure about a product name, gotta think…

      1. You could call it BlowJob.

      2. They actually have those.

        1. I want one. Link?

          1. I mean towels are so passe and you have to wash them. Sometimes my wife asks me to get the towels out of the dryer for her. Bogus!

            1. Why don’t they promote that it dries the shower as well, preventing mold?

        2. +1 dressing room scene from Blade Runner

      3. Why not just de-wet the water?

        1. Why not just de-wet the water?

          Excellent. Get on that, World’s Greatest Scientist Neil deGrasse Tyson.

          1. I’m gonna need some funding.

            1. “…and it will help cure cancer.”

              Uncle Joe will cut you a check.

              1. Maybe water causes cancer, ever think of that smart guy?

                1. Maybe water causes cancer, ever think of that smart guy?

                  Yeah, and the food pyramid is wrong. Right.

            2. What is your study going to tell us about Mexican ass sex?

              1. That it’s better stoned.

      4. They have people dryers at theme parks outside the water rides.

    2. Try using a towel, it generally goes quicker.

      1. I air dry. Don’t towel-shame me.

        1. Your handle somehow makes more sense now.

        2. Via a stiff jog through the park?

          1. Crusty doesn’t go for stiff jogs. He jogs, stiff.

            1. Then why don’t they call him Crusty Flapper?

      2. You’re a towel!

  12. At first blush, cynicism (or is it realism?) toward government is an unalloyed win for libertarians. After all, we want less government, and the less people trust government, the less of it they’ll demand, right?

    I like where you’re going with this, Nick.

    1. and the less people trust government, the less of it they’ll demand, right?

      Well, you would think so. But apparently not.

      1. The less people trust government, the more they support people like Bernie because “honest politician!” “no dark money!” “gimme free shit!”

        1. The latter reason being key.

        2. Look at it this way, in a low trust government people think that the government is out to screw over group A for the profit of group B.

          So the natural response is for group A to try to screw over group B for their own benefit, leading to increasing levels of government as different groups try to use the government for their own benefits, and decreasing levels of trust in the government.

          Of course, the libertarian response is that the government shouldn’t go around screwing anybody over, but look at the polls to see how popular that is.

  13. Speaking of the moon shot, despite JFK’s soaring speech, it really was all about nothing more than beating the Russians on something for him.

    I was watching a show about the Apollo mission not long ago and they had an audio clip of JFK talking to somebody (I think it was the NASA director) in which he made it clear that beating the Russians was primarily what he was interested in – not going to the moon for some high minded goal for mankind.

    1. Well, that is a better reason than doing it as a high-minded goal, or doing it “because it is hard.”

      1. Agreed. Private citizens and corporations can do things for “high-minded goals for mankind” or “because it’s hard.” If the government is spending billions on it, there’d damn well better be a concrete point.

    2. it really was all about nothing more than beating the Russians on something

      Yep. Without that competition we might not have gotten there.

  14. As a final kicker, Aghion et al. suggest that increased regulation sows yet more distrust, which in turn engenders more regulation.

    That which is broken by top men needs to be fixed by top men.

  15. I don’t think the state should be involved in marriage, but until it butts the hell out, it shouldn’t discriminate against any two individuals who want to get hitched.

    Why only two?

  16. It doesn’t take reading but one ‘popular history’ of war before you run into Lt ‘Hero’, the ‘future governor of x state’ claiming he was energized by the notion that ‘if we can all work together in war like this, why not to accomplish [my fave idiotic goal]?!’
    Well, dimwit, the reason we’re doing this is not by choice; we were seriously threatened and reacted to that threat. Fuck you and [your fave idiotic goal]!

    1. Why do you hate our Heroes in Green?

      1. In what sense were the poor people drafted to fight and die responsible for the occasional officious asshole who would go on to become a pol?

    2. How about the notion that instead of each fighting the other, they should work together w their enemy on something everybody can agree on?

    3. When was the last time we were “seriously threatened?” The War of 1812?

  17. “freemarket downsizing government programs failed too”

    Yes, they do. There’s a critical difference between free-market free-market programs and the public-private partnership kind.

    One uses zero public money, the other one usually employs a state-sponsored or state-licensed monopoly to execute a plan with its own employees- often with contracts scattered with prevailing wage demands and other social justice crap.

    However, even without all the social justice crap- the problem is still the state-licensed monopoly.

  18. I disagree fundamentally with this guy in the video. “If those markets aren’t designed properly”. There’s your first problem, you can’t design markets, you either let them be, or you fuck them up. Once you’re designing a market, it’s fucked up.

    1. This.
      Any third party sticking a nose into a free transaction will only screw it up; no good can come of it.

    2. Barry showed us he knows how to design the bestest, most freest market for health coverage ever! You peanuts just don’t get it.

  19. Cannabis is well known in animal studies and human anecdotes to be effective against cancer.

    You have to wonder why no one mentions that.

    1. I’m always stunned at how many rappers have glaucoma.

      1. Dose matters. They were not taking enough to do a cure/prophylaxis.

        My eye doctor said that you have to be lighting up every half hour during the day to have an effect on glaucoma.

        1. Challenge accept

  20. Shrike’s belove Ess and Pee is back to oct 2014 levels. Obama 4 more years!

    1. It’s going to be sad when the Dow is at 10000 again at the wnd of his presidency just like the beginning.

  21. Government is good at doing exactly three things – killing people, breaking things, and threatening to do those things. That’s what government does. That’s what government is. Trying to hold it to account on anything else is like trying to hold a plate accountable for being a good steak dinner.

    1. Expecting the FedGov to actually solve some particular problem is like expecting Elmer Fudd to catch you a rabbit for supper.

  22. When it comes to Joe Biden, the mocking laughter will never die.

  23. So Gillespie is a socialist, what a shock.

  24. There was an econtalk on megaprojects. Whether government or private, 90% come in over budger, 90% underdeliver what was promised, 90% are behind schedule.

    If those are independent variables (probably not) thst is a 1/1000 chance for megaprojects coming in as planned.

  25. What’s the difference between Gillespie and a prog?

  26. And they just might be the preconditions for actually getting to a point where we trust government enough to do certain things well so we can start pruning it back in all the places it shouldn’t be.

    The history of the Democrats and modern liberalism makes me think this will really work.

  27. I’m not an anarchist, or even what might be called a “foundationalist libertarian.” That is, I’m less interested in debating and enacting philosophically ideal versions of the size of the state. I’m a directional libertarian in that I want things to move in the right direction, toward more individual freedom and choice.

    Sure, that’s all right. It’s like with everything else in life. For instance, I do not debate with my family about the kind of restaurant we want to visit for dinner. No, the best approach for us is to start driving around more or less in the right direction, whatever that right direction happens to be.

    Ok, enough sarcasm. First of all, Nick, I don’t believe you. Everybody has a notion of an ideal and engage in debate about how feasible that ideal could be. And it is from that ideal that principles and foundations are built. That’s not a waste of time if you think it is. Second, there’s nothing wrong with anarchism, just like there is nothing wrong with the idea of a totally free society.

    1. My family used that restaurant-finding method a lot.

  28. So are libertarians still non-interventionist?

    https://reason.com/archives/201…..ertarians/

    1. Democratic Reconstruction in Japan Post WWII. Gen. MacArthur’s title “Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers” left no doubt who was in charge during his six-year stint. Worked through the locals to help forge a model democracy.

    2. The Marshall Plan. Aid to rebuild Europe following WWII. This initially unpopular idea was dubbed “Operation Rathole” by its opponents. Truman took his time working this through Congress and making the case for public support. Executed by experienced business leaders, this operation closed up shop when the job was done.

  29. So is Nick’s idea of a Libertarian Moment a reduction of a spending increase?

    1. Never gets tire, eh, Winston?
      Who touched you there? You can tell us…

  30. Also how many government programs have been eliminated when their work was done? If getting rid of unpopular programs is so hard than how will eliminating popular ones work?

    And they just might be the preconditions for actually getting to a point where we trust government enough to do certain things well so we can start pruning it back in all the places it shouldn’t be.

    If we trust government than why should government get out of anything?

    1. Eggers and O’Leary suggest the Marshall Plan as one government program that was ended when it achieved its objective. Whether they are correct in that is another matter.

      1. Seems the Marshall plan ending more had to with the Korean War, the Cold War and Republican opposition rather than any sort of notion that it had “succeeded”.

    2. then

  31. I appreciate the spirit of this article, but I think there is a place for idealism, too. Nick implicitly concedes the anarchist-libertarian’s point that government is fundamentally flawed. A necessary evil is still evil, and the necessity of evil is philosophically debatable. My concern is that this approach will inexorably lead into justification of government coercion. These two figures, Eggers and O’Leary, already seem to be arguing that, in some cases, government is indeed better than its absence. I would never commit to that position, though I could accept that some kinds of government are less bad than others.

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  33. Unfortunately for Obama, cancer isn’t that terribly complicated. As Thomas Seyfried is trying to tell people, cancer is a metabolic disease, not a genetic one. When the rest of the world wakes up to that fact, we’ll finally “figure out” that the vast majority of cancers are a result of hyperinsulinism, which means that it’s largely your diet. The epidemiological evidence strongly suggests it. Cancer is a disease of civilization, when you switch from hunter-gatherer diets and activity levels to sedentary ones with large populations in cities, low activity levels, and grain/carb heavy diets. From Egyptians to Eskimos. Otto Warburg showed that cancer was a mitochondrial failure back in the 20’s – and got the Nobel for that contribution. (Got nominated a second time while under Hitler’s regime – most brilliant biochemist ever.)

    1. And I post right under the giant penis. Awesome.

      1. That’s what that is? I thought it was a hooded fencer.

        1. I thought it was Jesus with a cane….

    2. Mitohondrial failure, or simple lack of oxygen from overgrowth?

    3. AFSlade|1.13.16 @ 8:23PM|#
      “Unfortunately for Obama, cancer isn’t that terribly complicated. As Thomas Seyfried is trying to tell people, cancer is a metabolic disease, not a genetic one. When the rest of the world wakes up to that fact, we’ll finally “figure out” that the vast majority of cancers are a result of hyperinsulinism, which means that it’s largely your diet.”

      Sniff, sniff; doesn’t pass.

  34. What if the size and scope of government, also at post-war highs by most measures, is growing not in spite of such attitudes but because of them?

    The smart response from a libertarian perspective would be to lay out the conditions and contexts for legitimate and efficient deployment of government actions.

    What if you propose a plausible mechanism where distrust of government leads to more govt, other than “correlation must mean causation”, before talking about how libertarians should respond to such an implausible theory that you somehow accept as possibly factual?

  35. I enjoyed Eggers & O’Leary. Never thought of government that way.

    FYI – Did you catch the fact that Obama’s moon/cancer statement was eerily similar to Rob Lowe’s lines in an episode of “The West Wing?” (Not the first time they’ve channeled President Jed Bartlet.) Once again, this White House is way too comfortable substituting fiction for real life.

  36. So their big examples of government doing good work is Cap & Trade and congestion taxes? Very libertarian.

  37. $85 an hour! Seriously I don’t know why more people haven’t tried this, I work two shifts, 2 hours in the day and 2 in the evening?And whats awesome is Im working from home so I get more time with my kids. Heres where I went,

    ———— http://www.nettrader2.com

  38. My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can’t believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do..

    Clik This Link inYour Browser….

    ? ? ? ? http://www.WorkPost30.com

  39. My last pay check was $9500 working 12 hours a week online. My sisters friend has been averaging 15k for months now and she works about 20 hours a week. I can’t believe how easy it was once I tried it out. This is what I do..

    Clik This Link inYour Browser…….

    ? ? ? ? http://www.WorkPost30.com

  40. In fact, polities with “low-trust” in government routinely clamor for more government.

    I think you have the cause-and-effect backwards. Cultures that love lots of government tend to put a lot of blind trust in government, which leads to corruption and ineffectiveness, which leads to low trust. (But it doesn’t change the culture.)

  41. my neighbor’s half-sister makes $83 every hour on the computer . She has been without a job for 9 months but last month her payment was $17900 just working on the computer for a few hours. why not try this out

    +++++++++++++++++ http://www.Wage90.Com

  42. my neighbor’s half-sister makes $83 every hour on the computer . She has been without a job for 9 months but last month her payment was $17900 just working on the computer for a few hours. why not try this out

    +++++++++++++++++ http://www.Wage90.Com

  43. Start working at home with Google! It’s by-far the best job I’ve had. Last Wednesday I got a brand new BMW since getting a check for $6474 this – 4 weeks past. I began this 8-months ago and immediately was bringing home at least $77 per hour. I work through this link, go to tech tab for work detail.
    +_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+_+ http://www.buzznews99.com

  44. You hear *that* Abdulrahman al-Awlaki? Doubt it!

    Okay, subscription renewed.

  45. You missed the point entirely, Nick. When you partisans at Reason start acting rationally and stop acting as clowns, then possibly, just possibly your commentary will have some value. What you don’t understand is that Biden is not going to personally cure cancer, and how you could have assumed that is beyond all intellect. Biden has a year remaining in office and during that time he is to focus the resources in the government and the scientific community in an effort to find more successful cures for cancer. You no doubt are unaware of the successes of immuno-onclology for various genetic forms of cancer. Also, unaware of the number of clinical trials which are utilizing immunotherapies and great strides ar being made. But no, you choose to ridicule unknowingly and expose yourself for the little man you really are.

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