April Freeman Banner 2014

ARTICLE

Painless Subsidy or--Progress In Fiscal Equity

NOVEMBER 01, 1960 by H.P.B. JENKINS

Economist at Fayetteville, Arkansas

It was a foggy afternoon

At story-telling time.

Old Kaspar chewed a dead cigar

and thinned his rum-and-lime,

While Peterkin and Wilhelmine

Turned on the futurama screen.

 

They saw a crowd of drooping men

Go through an open door

And dump their loads of dollar bills

Upon the marble floor.

Then each would pick his dollars up

And gambol like a frisky pup.

 

"Now tell us what it’s all about!"

The little children cried.

"It is the Painless Subsidy,"

Old Kaspar soon replied.

"It gives a man a bulging purse,

But leaves his conscience none the worse."

 

"There was a time," Old Kaspar said,

"When fiscal arts were crude,

And people got their subsidies

By methods slow and rude—

With tax collectors breaking heads

And tearing mattresses to shreds."

 

"But now a self-respecting man

Can get a subsidy

Of any size his heart desires

And spend it blamelessly.

No longer need he feel remorse

For neighbors robbed by legal force."

 

"But why have subsidies at all,

If each his own must pay?"

"We can’t have economic growth,

I’ve heard the Planners say,

Without abundant subsidies

To stimulate the industries."

ASSOCIATED ISSUE

November 1960

comments powered by Disqus

EMAIL UPDATES

* indicates required
Sign me up for...

CURRENT ISSUE

April 2014

Around the world, people are struggling to throw off authoritarianism, with deeply mixed results. From Egypt to Venezuela, determined people build networks to overthrow their regimes, but as yet we have not learned to live without Leviathan. In this issue, Michael Malice and Gary Dudney discuss their glimpses inside totalitarian regimes, while Sarah Skwire and Michael Nolan look at how totalitarian regimes grind down the individual--and how individuals fight back. Plus, Jeffrey Tucker identifies a strain in libertarianism that, left unchecked, could reduce even our vibrant movement to something that is analogous to the grim aesthetic of architectural brutalism. The struggle for our lives and freedom is a struggle for beauty; it begins inside each of us.
Download Free PDF

PAST ISSUES

SUBSCRIBE

RENEW YOUR SUBSCRIPTION