A common refrain among liberals is that the United States would be better off if we followed the lead of communist China.
President Obama and his green energy allies continue to argue that China is making huge investments into solar energy and hence, we should as well. Progressive icon Elizabeth Warren, running for the Senate in Massachusetts, actually ran an ad with similar logic.
“We’ve got bridges and roads in need of repair and thousands of people in need of work. Why aren’t we rebuilding America?” asks Warren. “Our competitors are putting people to work, building a future. China invests 9% of its GDP in infrastructure. America? We’re at just 2.4%. We can do better.”
Such reasoning is faulty if one believes in the free market.
F.A. Hayek and other Austrian economists argue correctly that government investment decisions are not necessarily correct more often than not because there is no market discipline in the decision. The “fatal conceit” of socialists is the believes that government bureaucrats can make better investment decisions than millions of people working in the confines of the free market.
There is no reason to chase China and their solar panel spending or Europe and their government-run health care spending. Bureaucrats don’t know more than the marketplace. Never have and never will.