Vernon Smith on Globalization
By Arnold Kling
In a wide-ranging lecture, Vernon Smith says,
No one has said it better than
David Hume over 250 years ago, when he said that there are just
three laws of human nature:
1) the right of possession,
2) its transference by consent, and
3) the performance of promises.
These are the ultimate foundations of order, with or without
formal law, that make possible markets and prosperity.
…Coveting the possessions of others invites an
involuntary state enforced redistribution of the gains from
specialization and trade, endangering incentives to produce
tomorrow’s harvest perhaps as surely as its theft.
Actually, it is difficult to pull excerpts from this talk, because there is wisdom scattered throughout. Thanks to Don Boudreaux for the pointer.
For Discussion. What are the similarities and differences between state enforced redistribution and theft?