Quote of the day—Robert Higgs and Donald J. Boudreaux

Nothing is so permanent in government as a temporary agency or an emergency bill. Crises bring into operation new government activities and new scales of spending, taxing, and regulating; they were not intended to be permanent, yet became so by virtue of entrenched special interests and bureaucrats, often backed by congressional sponsors. Act in haste, repent at leisure.

Robert Higgs and Donald J. Boudreaux
May 5, 2020
Past Crises Have Ratcheted Up Leviathan–The COVID-19 Pandemic Will Too
[Politicians never let a crisis go to waste.—Joe]


4 thoughts on “Quote of the day—Robert Higgs and Donald J. Boudreaux

  1. “They were not intended to be permanent”. That’s not clear. What is clear is that they were not marketed as permanent. But, cynic that I am, I assume that the intent all along was that they would indeed be permanent, and ever-growing.

  2. Judges often refer to “precedent”, rather than the actual statutes, laws or constitution they’re ostensibly upholding, in the same way that the papacy refers to “Tradition” rather than Biblical precepts.

    What we’ll refer to as “Crisis Legislation” sets “Precedent” or establishes “Tradition”. I believe I have more standing in declaring that such is its purpose, than anyone has in declaring that it is for “safety” or any other short term benefit to the people in general.

    Such behavior is a part of the Roman system, which also uplifts, upholds and supports the Greek, Medo-Persian and Babylonian systems. One aspect of the Medo-Persian system was that, being “infallible”, the decrees of any previous king stood from that point on, becoming permanent.

    “Precedent” and “Tradition” serve the same role in the present-day Romish system, their purpose being to undermine, and separate us from, the fundamental bedrock principles. It’s a system of slow, perpetual drift, away from said principles and into an arbitrary and absolute power in the hands of a few.

    The modern left has, for over 100 years, referred to this set of techniques and doctrines as “Progressivism”, which includes the Dialectic Method (“You can make a sandwich now, or in ten minutes”, or, “You can vote for a Democrat or a Republican”. Same trick. We are “given” “freedom to choose”, but either choice serves the trickster and undermines the chooser).

    Slow, inexorable corruption may take longer to overthrow a society, but by the time people fully realize what’s been done to them, they’ll always be in the minority, and it’s far too late to stop it. The corrupted system has become “the new normal” and it is then psychologically and morally impossible for most people to oppose it. This slow rot method is the alternative to a violent and precipitous revolution as the means of conquest.

    Even low level street gang leaders understand these techniques.

    • I’ve often dreamed about questions I would ask judicial nominees, if I were on the committee examining them.
      1. Please explain the Constitutional justification for the notion of “precedent”.
      2. Please explain the Constitutional justification for the notion of “scrutiny” (strict or otherwise).

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