Introduction: The Paradox of Big Government
Politicians and the public decry big government, yet they are eager for more of it. The explanation: illusions about what government is and what it can accomplish.
1. The Philanthropic Illusion
The belief that government has money of its own.
2. The Voluntary Illusion
The belief that government implements its decisions through cooperation and reasoned agreement (which overlooks that government action is based on force and the threat of force).
3. The Illusion of the Frictionless State
The belief that government can transfer resources with negligible overhead cost.
4. The Materialistic Illusion
The belief that money alone buys successful policy results.
5. The Watchful Eye Illusion
The belief that government is wiser and more responsible than the public.
6. The Illusion of Government Preeminence
The belief that only government can solve pressing social and economic problems.