John Stossel

Whoa! "Community" is a loaded word. Statists misuse it to criticize individualism, as though the two don't coexist, as if, without government, people don't work together. But this is nonsense. Real communities emerge organically from individuals who volunteer to come together for common purpose. Communities are not created by government edict, which amounts to a threat of violence against peaceful people. As classical liberals like Herbert Spencer and F.A. Hayek taught, there is no conflict between individualism and social cooperation. These are two sides of the same coin of freedom. Individualists form families, clubs, charities, churches and softball leagues, and participate in thousands of voluntary communities.

But what about the poor? Kohn said government is needed to assure equality, just as parents make sure a cake is not unfairly divided among family members.

"The reality is ... we have fixed resources."

But we don't have fixed resources! Thanks to economic liberalization, 7 billion people on earth live better than ever. Poverty decreases. That should prove we don't have fixed resources. Rather than one cake or a fixed supply of cake, greedy entrepreneurs -- like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs -- make more and bigger cakes. Everyone gets richer. The producers, however greedy, are heroes.

Inequality is a product of freedom. When people are free, some will acquire much more than others. Forty years of reporting taught me that letting the wealthy indulge their greed protects consumers and helps poor people much more than government programs do. Just keep them away from government power.

The pursuit of self-interest -- greed, if you will -- benefits everyone. We should free the market and enjoy the prosperity.


John Stossel

John Stossel is host of "Stossel" on the Fox Business Network. He's the author of "No They Can't: Why Government Fails, but Individuals Succeed." To find out more about John Stossel, visit his site at >johnstossel.com. To read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate Web page at www.creators.com. ©Creators Syndicate