Poor logic and polling data

A new Gallup poll reports, “57% of Americans say the government is trying to do too many things that should be left to businesses and individuals, and 45% say there is too much government regulation of business. Both reflect the highest such readings in more than a decade.”

The results are more than a little discouraging. In a time of widespread fires, a whole lot of Americans have been convinced not to trust the fire department. After deregulation helped create a global economic collapse, a plurality of Americans think “there is too much regulation of business.” Thats kind of nutty, but its also the highest number on this question in a generation.

The Washington Monthly doesn’t seem to understand that it’s possible to have too much regulation but not enough in the right places. Massive regulation isn’t the same as appropriate regulation.

A levee of any length will be ineffective if it has some well-placed (or, thanks to the collusion of business and regulators, deliberately placed) holes.

It’s also quite possible, and, indeed, quite common, to believe the government is doing too much while still wanting it to do more for you… everybody will take something for free.