Tuesday, October 30, 2007

On unintended consequences

Thomas Sowell's column today does a great job of illustrating the law of unintended consequences. His argument is definitely an oversimplification (you can't blame the wildfires entirely or even mostly on open space laws, for instance) but it still does a pretty good job of showing the inability of government to know everything or foresee all the consequences of its actions. A better understanding in government that you can never know all the consequences of a policy and that every policy has tradeoffs would at the very least, create a bit more humility in the government (and a little less hubris).