Sunday, March 06, 2005

Topic Drift

The Barista of Bloomfield Ave. has an interesting post about school construction costs and falling flat on her back. The ensuing comments are a hoot, devolving into a debate about social security interspersed with cheers for speedy recovery and pain medication recommendations.
Especially interesting was the comment by Right of Center, who does a nice job of tying school construction to social security:

Social Security is a wealth redistribution program masked as an "annuity". If it was an annuity (you pay for your own self) there would not be such a hue and cry about private accounts, right? Those who like SS can opt in and those who don't can opt out. BUT, that does not work because the money of the opt-outers is needed to be redistributed to the opt-inners. See?
All the Abbot program does is try the same thing with "unequal" school construction budgets. Redistribute funds from wealthier school systems to poorer ones.
Any time government tries to solve social inequities by taking the short-cut of paying to "equalize" the outcome the result will be fraught with waste because there is no objective measure of an "equal" outcome. The tendency will be to pump more and more (of other people's) money into a wasteful system until all the voices asking for "more" are satisfied. The problem is made even worse when (in Tragedy of the Commons fashion) everyone must be in the system like SS.