Ironical Wisdom from Joseph Epstein

One might think the board of directors of the Good Intentions Paving Co. are all liberals, but they are not. One of the firm’s most impressive undertakings was hatched in the Oval Office among George W. Bush, Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld. Why not, they decided, knock off a wretched tyrant and bring democracy to a Middle Eastern country and thereby stabilize the region—all in one bold action? Tens of thousands of violent deaths and many billions of dollars later, with car bombs regularly exploding in downtown Baghdad, and with Sunni and Shiite hatred not in the least abated, the Good Intentions Paving Co. deserves to take another bow.

This allusion to the road to hell is from Mr. Epstein’s insightful opinion piece, “ObamaCare and the Good Intentions Paving Co.,” in the Wall Street Journal of December 31, 2013. Other paving projects discussed are ObamaCare, affirmative action, No Child Left Behind, the Russian Revolution, and the minimum wage. Again, Hayek’s statement comes to mind: “The curious task of economics is to demonstrate to men how little they really know about what they imagine they can design.”

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