Sunday, August 30, 2009

Putting Ted Kennedy into perspective

Professor Don Boudreaux of George Mason University and one of the people behind Cafe Hayek, recently sent the following letter to the New York Times:

Ted Kennedy’s canonization is too much.

Every day brings the deaths of thousands of people, the vast majority of whom are known only to their families and friends. These people aren’t mourned by politicians, reporters, or the general public.

Yet almost every one of these unheralded persons has been more productive than has Ted Kennedy – or Chuck Grassley, Nancy Pelosi, the Georges Bush, or any other politician you name, whether he or she be still breathing or buried.

Who installed the windows in my house? I don’t know. Yet he provided value to me and never forced his hand into my wallet or his nose into my eating habits.

Who will fly the plane that will carry me home tomorrow from Michigan to Virginia? I have no idea. Yet that pilot will render unto me (and dozens of others) a valuable service in exchange for funds that I voluntarily paid to his or her employer. That pilot doesn’t force me to fly. Nor does he or she presume to know better than I do what is best for my family and me.

Who caught the fish that I will eat tonight? Who trucked it from the sea to my hotel? Who will cook that fish? Who designed the dishwasher that cleaned the plate and utensils that I will use?

I know almost none of the millions of people whose daily efforts make possible my life and that of countless other Americans. These people don’t hatch grand plans for arrogantly re-working society.

They offer only to deal voluntarily with me and with others, never pretending – unlike Mr. Kennedy – to be endowed with a mysterious genius and a saintly inspiration justifying haughty intrusions into the affairs of others.

Politicians are mortals. But as their greedy lust for power and glory reveals, they are mortals especially flawed.

Donald J. Boudreaux


Anonymous said...

I think our judges & all the members of the various bar associations & law schools should read this & take it to heart.

Mind you, the reality is they would read it and then say, in their self deluded manner, "That's what I'VE BEEN SAYING FOR YEARS" then go on maintaining the fiction that they are somehow the heroes of the little guy.

Anonymous said...

Didn't hear any complaints when Reagon was cannonized and boy did the GOP use him.

Anonymous said...

Anonymous #2.

So basically, simply because YOU didn't hear any complaints about Reagan means that ordinary people'd deaths are somehow less important than holier than thou Kennedy.

You're an idiot.

Kennedy was a drunken, cowardly shit stain who let a young lady die because he was concerned about how a DUI would look on his political career.