An editorial in The Buffalo News June 19 headlined “Welcome new master plan aims at making downtown core more people-friendly” said this:
“Yes, continued development could happen by accident, but it’s dangerous to leave growth up to chance and likely to produce less desirable results.”
Wrong. Leaving growth up to chance is Buffalo’s only hope for escaping the economic blight that has plagued it for over a half-century.
Let’s not forget what killed Buffalo in the first place: government interference in the marketplace and central planning, from destroying untold billions in waterfront property with wrongheaded expressways and disastrous public housing projects to larcenous taxes to stifling regulations.
“Leaving growth up to chance” really means leaving growth up to the market. Instead of government officials seizing money from taxpayers and deciding how it will be spent, each individual spends his or her own money as he or she sees fit.
This subjects new projects to the rigors of the market. Entrepreneurs face the prospect of losses if they build something people won’t buy voluntarily. When the government builds it, taxpayers don’t have a choice. They pay whether they want it or not. This steals capital from enterprises that can make a profit and employ people.
Tom Mullen is the author of A Return to Common Sense: Reawakening Liberty in the Inhabitants of America.