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A Little More Humility Please

And A Lot Less Planning!


“The man who thinks he can live without others is mistaken; the one who thinks others can’t live without him is even more deluded.”

Hasidic proverb


One of the real problems with government is that it’s leadership tends attracts people who have an overly high estimation of the value of their own ideas.  And despite all the election night speeches about being “humbled” by some great victory, success at the polls only helps to convince our political leaders of the infallibility of their own intellects.  Keep in mind that the more highly the politicians think of themselves and their ideas, the less they think of you and your ideas.  Actually, you’re not even supposed to have ideas.  That’s what you elected them for.

One outcome produced by collecting up all the largest egos in the land and sending them to Washington, Trenton, Freehold or 600 Main Street is lots of economic planning.

Now in my view, the economy is not a thing.  The economy is us.  It is we the people living our individual lives and pursuing our individual desires.  It is the voluntary cooperation that naturally occurs between us, each aiming to improve his or her life.  On the contrary, government is force.  It can’t help the economy, it can only change it and ultimately diminish it because when force is applied it means some voluntary actions are no longer allowed to happen.  And if they were voluntarily happening, it means they were wanted by somebody.

Of course the mothership of economic planning is the Federal Reserve’s manipulation of money supply and interest rates, but then there’s also another million or so other federal schemes of various proprtion designed to supplant our plans and our ideas with politicians’ plans and ideas.  Our Trenton politicians stay true to character and lead the nation in planning and regulation at the state level.  (Gubernatorial aspirant Barbara Buono outlines her big plans for us in today’s Press.)   Even at the local level they can’t seem to leave us alone.

Here in Belmar we have also been subject to the will of the economic planners.  Some of these plans have stuck.  Others, thankfully, have not.  Here are a few that they have imposed, or attempted to impose, on us:

* The (apparently defunct) Coastal Monmouth Plan.

* The new, and unfortunately not yet defunct Grow Monmouth Plan, spearheaded by Republican(?) Freeholder Thomas Arnone.

* Ken Pringle’s Belmar Seaport Village Redevelopment Plan, which resulted in this lawsuit and then blew up in the pop of the real estate bubble.  It lives on in a slightly less ambitious form as Matt Doherty’s new Seaport Redevelopment Program.

* Then there is the Belmar Special Improvement District, which I believe is presently in a state of suspended animation.  There’s no political will to fund it anymore, but I guess officially ending it would call attention to it’s failure.

Please read all these plans and bear in mind that these are not competing plans, but actually layers of plans all of which we are, or were, expected to follow.  And these are just some of the local ones! There’s also all those federal and state plans.

Are there any decisions left to us anymore?  Correct me if I’m wrong but isn’t this supposedly our property we’re talking about?

Our founding fathers did not fight a revolution because they thought they could make better plans than King George could.  (Well, maybe Hamilton did but none of the rest of them.) They fought because they didn’t want King George or anybody planning their lives or livelihoods.

I have a plan.  My plan is to rid us of all their plans and not create any new ones.  My plan would be to allow you to plan.  After all it’s your life and it’s your money.  And I’m not smart enough to make those plans for you.  But at least I’m smart enough to know I’m not smart enough.

One Comment

  1. Tom Burke wrote:

    I’m Smiling….Nice post.

    Sunday, February 24, 2013 at 8:22 pm | Permalink

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