Any market-rescue scheme that Congress and the President entertain in upcoming days -- not weeks, one hopes -- will represent compromise. What one hopes -- well, doesn't one? -- is that measures focused on jump-starting investment and job-creation suffer less from compromise than do single-shot measures, like rebates, to people who don't pay taxes in the first place. Rebates we know there will be because major politics is going on here, and that keeps us from avoiding or watering-down measures that make the maximum number of people happy. Maybe even do a little good. A little.
If, for all that, the presidential candidates and their enablers -- in both parties -- out of fear, reluctance, disbelief, whatever, don't bias their policy toward freer, more efficient capitalism, not a lot may come of such policy as gets enacted.
One assumes a preacher to be biased in favor of God, an emcee to support whatever confection the sponsors are paying him to push. Wouldn't it be jolly if we could assume the men and women who run our politics now, or hope to run it in the next few years, were biased in favor of the free marketplace, whose favors again and again have made life easier in America than elsewhere?
Lower taxes, less regulation, more economic rewards for performance -- you might kind of think such a line-up likelier to work than higher taxes, tougher regulation, more denunciations of earners. But you know politics. We'll have to see.
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