Wednesday, January 04, 2006

The Sago Mine is a Conservative Problem

"Small government."

"The Market."

These are conservative touchstones today. They are also the wellspring of problems like the Sago mine disaster. Think about it; over 200 safety problems noted by the Federal government in 2004. But why didn't that make a difference to the men who died in the Sago mine?

Because the fines for safety violations are so small, and the government so hesitant to take firm actions against corporations, that it was less expensive for the company to pay the fines and keep operating as they always had.

There is the cost of small government that leaves all decisions to the market. And there is the value that the market places on people, on "human capitol."

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