This is the real root of Bastiat's differential ideological appeal. Friends of the free market love him because Bastiat destroys the inane arguments that make the modern welfare state popular. Once you deprive the median voter of these inane arguments, friends of the modern welfare state have to resort to intellectually serious arguments to make their case. Alas, these arguments are utterly beyond the median voter's comprehension. Most college students can't even grasp them.
Wednesday, August 15, 2012
Caplan writes an excellent post about the tendency of many intellectuals to minimize the fundamental contributions to economics of Frédéric Bastiat: