Friday, February 6, 2015

The Futile Quest To Overrule The Market

By Chris Rossini's a new one from the progressive lexicon. It's called "Body Diversity":

From time immemorial, there have been those who have a problem with voluntary choices made in the marketplace. There are always those who have a problem with people freely expressing their own preferences.

Whether it be King James I, who disliked the use of tobacco, or Ashley Graham who thinks there needs to be more 'body diversity', what they're really saying is "consumers should be choosing what I think they should be choosing." Or "consumers should seek satisfaction of their desires, and value things the way I think they should value things."

Naturally, such individuals gravitate towards government coercion to reach their ends. They either enter government themselves, or lobby government to do their bidding.

In real life, the job of the entrepreneur is to satisfy consumers as they are, not as the peanut gallery wishes them would be. If consumers prefer Lady Gaga to Beethoven, then Lady Gaga products will be provided. If consumers prefer beer to carrot sticks, then the kegs will come off the assembly line.

Entrepreneurs need to be very cautious with "people should be like this" type thinking. That can lead down the road of quickly losing your capital. Now, of course, there is nothing wrong with risking your own time and money. If your foresight turns out to be correct, then big profits could potentially come your way.

However, with all the "diversity" and "inequality" propaganda that is force-fed to the American public each day, we're seeing something a bit different.

If women aren't making the same amount of money as men, then there must be something inherently wrong with men. If men are only buying swimsuit issues with thin women, but not with plus-size women, then there must be something inherently wrong with men.

Entrepreneurs take their profit & loss signals and adjust accordingly to reality. The thought of "rewiring" the male population doesn't even cross their minds.

Not so with government and its army of social engineers. Let's say a major magazine puts a swimsuit issue with a plus-size woman out.....and it flops. You can already imagine how Slate, or Salon, or ThinkProgress, or BusinessInsider would react.

You can also imagine how government would get to work on shaping B.S. laws....Regulation #20,537,421 would say that at least one obese woman must appear in the pages of a periodical. She must be prominently placed, and be no closer than 2.732 inches from the margin of the page.

Government schools indoctrination centers would maybe get to work on innocent little boys as well. God only knows what they would fill their heads with.

That's what all this incessant "diversity" and "inequality" stuff is all about. Taking control away from free individuals, their voluntary choices, and the entrepreneurs that satisfy them, and putting the control into the hands of those who think they know better.


  1. Chris, Did Ashley Graham express a desire for government imposition of something like your hyperbolic "Regulation #20,537,421"? If so, I missed it. She seems to be saying that media publishers are still promoting an unrealistic ideal of physical attractiveness. Until she comes out in favor of government regulation, you have no point here.

    1. Good point EdD. This post got me thinking about the nexus between advertising/marketing in the marketplace and the engineering of consent via propaganda in the political sphere that was developed by Bernays, among others. Both approaches try to "make you want it" without using coercion. Sunstein and his "nudging" approach is the modern variation. That's not to say coercion in a physical sense has been abandoned, though.