Nothing New, of Course

Yet I suspect Milton Friedman did more to end the draft than the accomodating Baez sisters, which I guess suggests something about the relative persuasiveness of certain organs. 
The excruciatingly pedantic former logic instructor in me cannot resist pointing out that this is a rather stronger (and more ridiculous) claim than “I only sleep with Democrats,” as it sets out a sufficient condition for girls saying yes, rather than a mere necessary condition for a girl saying yes. But it is also pointlessly weak, if it is given a not implausible interpretation as “For every boy who says no, there is some girl who says yes.” (Don't think you're getting Joan Baez!) But this follows trivially from the truth that “For every boy, there is some girl who says yes” — especially if money is involved. But there's no denying it's a damn pithy slogan!  
[Thanks to Anonymous Coward for the reminder and Brink for the link.]

Author: Will Wilkinson

Vice President for Research at the Niskanen Center

4 thoughts

  1. I might agree but first I have to ask what better system do you have. Besides an election I can see no better person to appoint the senator then the governor. He is the most recognizable person in the state.
    Ultimately I think it should be left to state choice.
    Emergency elections are expensive. In the past the logistics of holding an election was much more an issue then it is today. If a state is ok with the cost of an election then fine. Otherwise the governor is not a bad choice.

  2. As unfortunate as this episode is, I don’t agree. The senator is supposed to represent the *state*, which is a political entity, in a larger political entity, the Senate. This is why once upon a time he was chosen by the state legislature, as that was thought the most plausible source for finding the will of the state. If representation of the *people* is the primary concern, then the whole senate idea should be scrapped, since it isn’t terribly representative to have the *people* of Vermont possess 1/50 of the power in the Senate. It only makes sense if you view it in accordance with its rationale: one state, one share of the power. And indirect representation, we got–the governor is himself elected.

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