Talk:Republican 'culture of corruption'

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Rent-Seeking, Public Choice, and The Prisoner's Dilemma

Mankind soon learn to make interested uses of every right and power which they possess, or may assume. The public money and public liberty...will soon be discovered to be sources of wealth and dominion to those who hold them; distinguished, too, by this tempting circumstance, that they are the instrument, as well as the object of acquisition. With money we will get men, said Caesar, and with men we will get money. Nor should our assembly be deluded by the integrity of their own purposes, and conclude that these unlimited powers will never be abused, because themselves are not disposed to abuse them. They should look forward to a time, and that not a distant one, when a corruption in this, as in the country from which we derive our origin, will have seized the heads of government, and be spread by them through the body of the people; when they will purchase the voices of the people, and make them pay the price.

Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1784

Excerpt: It becomes wrong when rent-seeking means trying to collect rents off of capital that is not the rightful possession of the rent-seeker.

http://www.friesian.com/rent.htm#text-3

Please keep in mind that whenever the text quotes "free markets" it means truly free markets, that is, markets free from the "letters of marque" commonly given to pirates by the Old World English, French and Spanish governments in attempts to corner their "markets". I believe today they're referred to as corporate charters, attendant with all the regulations required for control of their specific markets.

Also, in free markets, labor is free to decide whether selling it's services would be more prosperous than keeping it's fruits to itself. In the modern economy, this is often not the case due to lack of material resources and results in a wage slavery where labor cannot bargain freely.

The Fundamentals of Rent-Seeking by Gordon Tullock, Professor of Economics, University of Arizona http://www.thelockeinstitute.org/journals/luminary_v1_n2_p2.html

JH


ANONYMOUS SENATOR BLOCKS FOIA REFORM BILL

An unidentified Republican Senator placed a secret hold on the Open Government Act, a bipartisan bill to strengthen the Freedom of Information Act, thereby preventing the Senate from acting on the bill this week.

"Regrettably, an anonymous Republican hold is stalling this important Freedom of Information Act legislation, needlessly delaying long-overdue reforms to strengthen FOIA and to protect the public's right to know," said Sen. Patrick Leahy (D-VT), a co-sponsor of the bill along with Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX).

"It is both unfortunate and ironic that this bipartisan bill, which promotes sunshine and openness in our government, is being hindered by a secret and anonymous hold. This is a good government bill that Democrats and Republicans alike, can and should work together to enact," Sen. Leahy said in a May 24 floor statement.

    http://www.fas.org/sgp/congress/2007/s052407.html

"I hope that the Senator placing the secret hold on this bill will come forward, so that we can resolve any legitimate concerns, and the full Senate can promptly act on this legislation," he said.