Monday, January 28, 2013

Myth of the Makers (Part 3)

In this series we are examining the libertarian economic myth that a small number of people are makers and that the rest of the society are takers. It attempts to show that this world view is false and works against society, not for it.

In Part 3 we continue examining the list of assumptions about the superiority of the Makers showing in counter arguments how theses assumptions lead us to false ideas about how society works.

Without Makers Society Collapses

Backyard inventor.
It is true that not everyone can invent the next great thing. Not everyone is able to write new music. Most people are unable to design their own cars. But to suggest that only a select few can do these things is easily disprovable. We have an over abundance of makers.

There are many people who can and do invent. Most inventions are never monetized, made in a factory and reproduced for all. Inventions that never leave the garage, the kitchen table, the hobby room are purely for the local benefit of those who invent and there close associates. Human beings are in fact very creative in finding new ways to solve old problems. Steven Wozniak was not the only computer hobbyist who invented a personal computer.

Land of tinkering.
The number of talented garage and bar bands in my country alone is astounding. Every neighborhood has an aspiring string quartet, guitar hero, or closet rapper. So many more songs are written and performed than go public as to make us literally awash in musical talent. Madonna is not the only creative musical artist to write a catchy tune.

In garages and small commercial buildings all around the land are individuals and small groups who design their own vehicles. From three wheeled custom motorcycles to flying cars, our nations ability to develop new means of moving ourselves around boggles the imagination. To suggest that only Mr Ford, Mr. Oldsmobile, and Mr. Harley are capable of designing vehicles is obviously not so.

Robber barons showing self interest.
It is the access to resources that divides Steve Wozniak, Madonna, and Mr. Ford from the general masses. Many have tried and failed at achieving the level of success enjoyed by people like these. Some fail because of personal inabilities. Most fail for lack of access to resources.

As the Small Business Administration has documented, most business fail because of lack of experience, insufficient money, and poor location. They do not fail because of the people are incapable. Rather, they fail because they have not been given the room to gain experience, have access to resources, and being given access to the right location. Those who control the resources shut out those who do not, unfairly limiting their own competition.

Labor farmed by greed.
Makers know best how to use resources.

Makers make decisions about how to use resources for their own personal interest. Few makers choose to allocate their resources for the greater good. This self interest often leads to a depletion of a shared resources by individuals, acting independently and rationally according to each one's self-interest, despite their understanding that depleting the common resource is contrary to the group's long-term best interests. Makers must be monitored and restrained by society in order to ensure that the Makers self interest does not damage the whole of society. Selfish makers can hurt us all.

The idea that selfishness and greed are a societal good is clearly false.  It is an argument that tries to justify immorality as a virtue.

Those who would tell us that they should get all the results of 'their labors' are actually trying to confuse us.  Ayn Rand's philosophical views has been perverted by a new generation of robber barons.

The division of society in to Makers and Takers is mythic attempt by a few to take even more from the labor of us all.

First Part 1 – Part 2 – Part 3

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