Back to the seventies

Argentina has imposed price controls, which do nothing to actually control prices, but lower both quality and supply while encouraging all sorts of corruption (just like high sin taxes). Price controls worked so well when Nixon tried them that Gerry Ford came up with his WIN program. Back in the seventies we remember that “profit” was a dirty word, just like today. We wrote some speeches for corporate executives (with writing partner EJ Dionne) in which we explained that “profit” meant “reserve for reinvestment” and that without it, there was no way to maintain and grow a business and create jobs and so forth. Seems pretty basic, but it seems that every few generations all the same mistakes have to be made so that some learn, at least temporarily, from their ignorance and folly.

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