I have long said mobility is an asset.
Well, no, I didn’t write any of this and didn’t know it was up until this morning when I saw it. But you really ought to read it, especially if you’re a young adult.
It’s not just about a feeling. It’s about opportunity.
There is quite a bit of data that says our mobility as a nation has decreased markedly over the last few decades. That’s a huge mistake and is a big part, in my opinion, of why we have the economic malaise that we do.
Our nation was designed for personal mobility by the Founders. They designed a system of multiple political laboratories. They are called States and yet we have done much violence to the premise of those laboratories by trying to make them as “same” as we can.
This is a grave error folks. You can’t peacefully change a political environment all of the time. Oh sure, it’s nice to believe you can, but the fact of the matter is that sometimes you can’t, whether due to corruption or simply stupidity of the people who live there.
What the Founders did was give the people a means to escape such an outcome without resorting to violence. Whether the problem is economic opportunity, excessive taxation and regulation or simply personal dislike you can up and move.
If you think $12,000 a year in property taxes on a house is too much, you can move somewhere that a similar house carries a $2,000 property tax bill. No jobs? There’s somewhere in this nation where there are jobs. Want to smoke weed? Move somewhere it’s legal. Don’t want booze on Sundays? Move somewhere with a blue law.
Through this process the good ideas flourish and the bad ones perish. They literally starve for want of people who can and will pay. Got a big welfare state? Move. If enough producers do all that are left are the parasites and without a host reform or collapse are the only two options left for said municipality or State.
We must stop and in fact reverse the “homogenization” of the States. The Bill of Rights and Constitution set forth a minimalist framework — the ability to freely trade and conduct commerce between states, the ability for people to move between states freely and the guarantee of basic rights such as speech and self-defense.
We have allowed much of this migration capability to be neutered. We have “state” licensing of doctors, lawyers and dozens of other professions which prevent high-wage professionals from moving as they wish. We have federal “mandates” for things like health care and welfare which again attempt to prevent such migration.
Some constraints are necessary but in general mobility is an asset and the closer we can return to 50 State political laboratories where people can vote with their feet the better off we will be.
But to go with the demand for people to be able to do so there must be people willing to do so.
This fact makes me smile today.
Via Market Ticker.