Repeating Public-Sector History
It seems humanity is fated to always reconvincing itself that it’s got the problems all figured out and can henceforth hand broad control to government entities. Ed Achorn makes a contrary suggestion:
Britain confronts what has historically been the great threat to representative republics. A majority of voters, whipped on by self-interested politicians, eventually figure out how to game the system to steal from a minority of productive taxpayers. As an avaricious government expands, the pummeled taxpayers have less incentive to produce and the economy struggles, with massive public debt ensuing. When the money runs out, social upheaval follows, with the imposition of dictatorship.
You can read about it in the ancient historians.
Or you can look at Central Falls, where the citizens have lost their power, through their elected representatives, to make their own decisions. A receiver will decide for them.
It may seem a little off to present a bankruptcy-style receiver as a “dictator,” but such consolidations of power, following upon a representative form of government, necessarily look like a benign, good idea at the beginning. True, there are checks and balances in the case of a municipal ruler, but the point of Achorn’s column is that Central Falls is a warning of things come at higher levels of government.