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[Libertarian]: "the government makes everything worse!"

[Normal human being]: "Why?"

[Libertarian]: "Because it's corrupt!"

[Nhb]: "Why?"

[Libertarian]: "Because all the politicians are bought and paid for!"

[Nhb]: "You mean bought and paid for by the capitalists?"

[Libertarian]: 😡

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Libertarians are so goofy. The holes and false constructions that prop up their ideology are hilarious

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@Catsandcatsandcats "If only I didn't have all these stupid regulations standing in the way of being able to exploit anyone else all I wanted economically, everyone could finally be free!"

@Catsandcatsandcats I once got into a twitter argument with a Libertarian who, in the same thread, argued that Government should stay out of people's business, but also that abortion should be illegal, and he didn't see the contradiction there even after I pointed it out

the cognitive dissonance was impressive

@Catsandcatsandcats It seems a bit weird to me that when a politician or bureaucrat takes a bribe it's somehow the fault of the person paying the bribe, like politicians and bureaucrats don't have any responsibility not to be corrupt. Does this extend to cops as well? Teachers who accept money to give better grades? Safety inspectors who take money to sign off on unsafe conditions? I guess they just can't help themselves?

@Catsandcatsandcats Not that the payers of bribes are innocent, but we've created a system that creates infinite opportunities for that sort of behavior, and where those who don't engage in that sort of behavior lose.

In the USSR and China, there was/is plenty of corruption as well, just of a different sort.

Planet Money has done an episode on the ROI for lobbying dollars. It's astonishingly high, depending on the issue. 700x in some cases.

@Catsandcatsandcats The biggest mistake I made back when I considered myself a libertarian was believing capitalism was something that existed independently of the government. It's all one system. There can be no "free market" because markets can only exist inside some kind of legal framework, whether it's formal or not, and the nature of that framework matters very much.

On that same note, it's not a matter of government regulating capitalists. Capitalists love regulation.

@Catsandcatsandcats Really what the capitalists want is for the regulation to harm their competitors more than it harms them. That's why you saw Amazon suddenly change direction on online sales taxes in the US. They had become more worried about competition from online retailers than from brick-and-mortar stores.

@freakazoid

They like certain types of regulation, mostly toothless ones that simply create an extra bureaucratic barrier to entry within an industry.

They don't, however, like regulations that actually work and curb dangerous, speculative, or destructive behavior, like say the Glass-Steagall Act, or antitrust laws, or environmental laws, or OSHA, etc. etc.

And this is why we've gotten shitgobs of toothless reforms like the Dodd-Frank act in the neoliberal age.

@freakazoid

I don't think the innocence of the politician is implied--you have to bear in mind though the source of the corruption, which is the person paying.

In other words, if you remove one corrupt politician, another corrupt one can, and probably will (judging by the American electoral system), fill in. If you remove the person, on the other hand, you may just solve the problem.

Which is why the person bribing is more to blame imo.

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