MCViewPoint

Opinion from a Libertarian ViewPoint

Minimising Government’s Dominance over Your Life

Posted by M. C. on November 2, 2021

So why do businessmen so often agree that the primary ingredient to success—that of understanding commerce (developing a work ethic, a sense of self-reliance and responsibility to customers, staying solvent, etc.)—was something that they had to gain by their own efforts? Why was this vital component not drilled into them in school?

Well, the simple answer can be found in the old saw, “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.”

https://internationalman.com/articles/minimising-governments-dominance-over-your-life/

by Jeff Thomas

Recently, whilst having lunch with several successful businessmen, the value of formal education was being discussed and one said, “When I got out of school, I thought I was fully educated and ready to take on the business world, but actually, I was clueless.”

The others laughed, recalling their own introductions into business. All agreed that, although they had taken all of the requisite courses, formal schooling prepared them not at all in the understanding of commerce.

That is, all except one. He, as a boy, had been encouraged by his parents to take on a paper route, open lemonade stands, cut lawns for neighbours, etc. Although his parents couldn’t afford university for him, by the time he graduated high school, he thoroughly understood the principles of commerce.

The bicycle that he rode in his early teens was bought out of profits from his early business ventures. Later on, he bought his first car out of his earnings. And so, when he left school, he hit the road running and was ahead of his “luckier” peers who were then at university.

When they graduated, each had an advantage the others didn’t have. Yet, at the lunch meeting mentioned above, each university graduate agreed that understanding commerce, which they had had to learn on their own, after graduation, was the central lesson that enabled their later success.

So why do businessmen so often agree that the primary ingredient to success—that of understanding commerce (developing a work ethic, a sense of self-reliance and responsibility to customers, staying solvent, etc.)—was something that they had to gain by their own efforts? Why was this vital component not drilled into them in school?

Well, the simple answer can be found in the old saw, “Those who can, do; those who can’t, teach.” Which is to say that those who simply do not grasp or do not wish to have to deal with the essential lessons of understanding commerce often become teachers. And of course, they can’t teach to others what they don’t understand themselves.

Employment Options for the Uninformed

But do all people in this category—those who either can’t or don’t wish to face the hard slog of learning to grasp commerce—become teachers? Actually, no, there are other pursuits that do not require these important lessons. The so-called “lower” jobs—common labourer, maid, dishwasher, garbage man, etc.—do not require this understanding.

But what of those who have somewhat greater ambition, but who either do not or cannot grasp the principles of commerce? Well, in every country, these folks tend to gravitate to the civil service. The tasks are similar to those in business, except that civil servants don’t need to have any regard for time spent efficiently, nor for profit and loss.

And what of those who possess great ambition—who wish to achieve great heights but have no use for an understanding of commerce? What job is most attractive to them? There are a few possibilities, but the most attractive is politics. In politics, an ambitious person can achieve great heights and yet have little or no appreciation for an understanding of commerce.

If we question the validity of this premise—if we examine our own leaders—we find that, regardless of where we live, most politicians demonstrate a minimum of concern for solvency, efficiency, work ethic, responsibility, etc. Although they read speeches, often prepared by others, that deal in balancing the budget, creating jobs, unemployment, etc., they almost never have the slightest grasp of the realities of what they describe.

And so, is it any wonder that so many politicians come up with plans for ever-increasing taxation, heavy regulation of business, redistribution of wealth, etc.?

Jamaica’s Coat Hangars

At the top of this page is a photo of a coat hanger. You’ll notice that it’s handmade—of aluminium wire and a whittled stick. I have several of these. During the 1970s, whenever I was in the neighbouring country of Jamaica on business, I would return home with a few. They were the most common clothes hangers in Jamaica at that time and were found in every dry cleaners and every hotel room on the island.

See the rest here

Be seeing you

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