Apart from driving up prices, one of the main problems of subsidized government loans is the fact that a student can get the same loan terms for a high-risk degree in art history as for a safer degree in engineering.
Governments don’t like it when citizens emigrate to escape high taxes and other government-imposed costs. Governments would much rather keep productive citizens and their money at home. Bigger countries find it’s much easier to keep us in.
Everyone knows about the Great Depression which brought massive government intervention and lasted a decade. But few know of the Depression of 1920–21 which was ignored by government and lasted eighteen months.
It is now commonplace for governments to measure economic prosperity with GDP metrics. Numerous arbitrary rules and faulty assumptions behind these measures, however, skew our view of how economies grow and living standards improve.
Throughout most of history, “citizens belonged to the city, body and soul,” writes Larry Siedentop in his new book Inventing the Individual . Even today, the Western idea of the free individual remains largely confined to the West.
For decades, the Italian state has facilitated the Mafia's grip on industry in Italy. The result has been a disastrous lack of foreign investment and other ills. It now seems that only the elimination of the central state could bring about serious reform.