Wingnuts have drank the efficient market Kool-Aid. They actually believe that a free market, unencumbered by government regulation, will be efficient and produce the greatest amount of wealth for the largest number of people. Any alleged market failure is the result of government interference, according to a wingnut. Hypocrites, on the other hand, will gladly pour you some Kool-Aid, but they won't drink it themselves. They benefit from the efficient market myth -- the larger the number of wingnuts in the world, the better off the hypocrites will be.
Like any good myth, the efficient market myth is obviously false; there is no evidence whatsoever supporting it, and there is tons of evidence against it, including (but not limited to) the following:
- The efficient market hypothesis relies crucially on a huge number of provably false assumptions: the free flow of information; full rationality; lack of barriers to market entry, etc. My favorite assumption, because health care is in the news, is that the product offered in the market is not a necessity.
- Recent events in the economy -- especially the global financial meltdown -- would never happen in an efficient market.
- No credible economist -- even the most fanatical economist from Chicago -- believes that markets are efficient under real-world conditions.
- Wingnuts learned economics from Ayn Rand.
- Hypocrites have more money than wingnuts.
- Wingnuts pay more in taxes than hypocrites, as a percentage of their income.
- Wingnuts and hypocrites are both Republicans, but wingnuts are more interested in social issues; hypocrites are more interested in economic issues.
- Wingnuts instinctively tie all economic issues to religious issues. They believe that unfettered capitalism is the system that Jesus would have picked.
- Wingnuts tend to assume that poor people deserve what they get; hypocrites hope that people don't get what they deserve.
- Hypocrites encourage the use of an odd and stilted vocabulary. For example, the word "businesses" is replaced by "job creators"; "profits" by "incentives"; "government" by "interference"; "taxes" by "job killers".
- Wingnuts believe that their taxes go down during Republican administrations; hypocrites' taxes actually do go down during Republican administrations.
- Wingnuts pay income taxes.
- Hypocrites pay (vastly lower) capital gains taxes.
- Wingnuts lost money in the mortgage meltdown.
- Hypocrites made money in the mortgage meltdown.
- Wingnuts paid for the government bailouts.
- Hypocrites were paid by the government bailouts.
What we need to drive home is the simple fact that efficient market hypocrites would lose their shirts in an efficient market. They got a small taste of what an actual market system would be like when the federal government refused to bail out Lehman Brothers, and the subsequent uproar guaranteed that they will never again be affected by the consequences of a free market system. And not only would they be unable to cope with the instabilities that their own actions have caused, but they would be unable to earn a living at all in the first place. After all, any business that buys an entity, reduces the value of it, and pockets a portion of the difference is by definition creating an inefficiency. Any business model that makes money by creating systemic instability in the market, or causing the value of something to deviate from its fundamentals is also creating market inefficiencies. Goldman Sachs, for example, would be the first against the wall in an efficient market.
I wish there was a simple way to get the message across that Mitt Romney is not a "successful businessman", but instead, the ultimate (to borrow the wingnuts' term) "welfare queen".