I want to talk about Ron Paul's stance on the BP oil spill today, because it shows an example of where free markets would have actually provided stronger protection against the harm.
Ron Paul on the BP Oil Spill
He goes further, saying, "government gives them permission, they limit the liability of the oil companies and then they say the taxpayer will pick it up."
Which outlines the basic premise of a free market as a defense against a disaster like this. How, you might ask?
"I like to think of how this would have been accomplished if we would have had a freer market and property rights. If we had property rights, somebody would have owned the fishing rights and oil drillers couldn’t go in there unless they got permission from the fishermen. And there would have to be provisions, there would have to be bonds put up and there would have to be provisions for accidents like this, " Ron Paul suggests, "...I mean, they shouldn’t have any limits, it’s a rich company."
"No, you don’t want to bankrupt this company, this a healthy company. But they should be held 100% liable for anybody who is lost, and those are the kind of contracts that would have been designed in the market place rather than having the government give the permits and have the inspections and set them up."
To put it simply: in business to business transactions, people watch their ass. In government and business relationships, they don't care because we are the ones who get screwed. If the fishermen of that area used their co-ops as fishing rights owners, they would be the ones to decide whether or not the oil companies would do any drilling, and not the federal government.
Now, let's move on and make a contrast here. I want you to keep in mind that both Mitt Romney and Ron Paul are talking about limited government, but only one of them has any concept of what that means.
Mitt Romney on the BP Oil Spill
Now does that sound like small government to you?
And look at it plain and simple: Oil company makes a mistake, we clean it up? We foot the bill?