The July 2021 edition of Reason Magazine contained an article written by Jason L. Riley entitled “The Conversion of Thomas Sowell.”  As I have mentioned several times in our 2 Paragraphs series, Thomas Sowell is one of my economist heroes.  But he still believed in Marxism even after taking a class from one of my other heroes, Dr. Milton Friedman.  But it simply took him a year working for the government for his conversion from Marxism to the Free Market System to take place.

So what did he experience?  While working in a summer job for the U.S. Department of Labor Dr. Sowell was tasked with analyzing the impact of federally-imposed minimum wages.  And in doing that he quickly noticed that when the wages went up, many people lost their jobs.  In addition, he noticed that his co-workers in the department didn’t seem to care one way or the other about the workers.  This is how Dr. Sowell described his experience:

“It forced me to realize that government agencies have their own self-interest to look after, regardless of those for whom a program has been set up.  Administration of the minimum wage law was a major part of the Labor Department’s budget and employed a significant fraction of all the people who worked there.  Whether or not minimum wages benefited workers may have been my overriding question, but it was clearly not theirs. . . . (And) the more other government programs I looked into, over the years, the harder I found it to believe that they were a net benefit to society.”
Thomas Sowell’s experience has been shared by countless others who care about people and want them to thrive – so that leads them to things like the ideals of Marxism.  But when they see those ideals put into practice, they realize that the Free Market System (obviously with some controls with laws dealing with child labor, safety in the workplace and even some anti-trust issues) is the only successful way to achieve those ideals.  Do you agree?

Note for the week:  Did you know that Federal Express and the United Postal Service are merging?  The name of the new company will be FedUp!

Judge Jim Gray (Ret.) Superior Court of Orange County, California 2012 Libertarian Candidate for Vice President

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