Monday, August 16, 2004

I Wish I'd Said That

Michael Munger, writing at the Library of Economics and Liberty, remembers when he worked at the Federal Trade Commission:
...In the afternoon, we would take a break from our exhausting day of blocking asinine regulations, and go have a big frozen yogurt at a place right beside the entrance to the Washington School for Secretaries. Sitting there having a yogurt, watching dozens of attractive women walk by, we would sometimes say to each other, "You know, this is criminal. We are just stealing our money."

But then one of us would state the standard defense, one all of us believed fervently: "Not true! If it weren't for us, occupying these crucial desks, they might very hire someone who would write new regulations! We are doing God's work here, gentlemen! We are constipating the intestines of the cow of regulation!"...
And he had a good point. I often felt guilty about working for a tax-funded think-tank. But at least I tried to enforce frugality, and I fought the good fight against "diversity" -- in the name of which an entire program has been erected since my retirement.