Stable owner Thomas Hobson is said to have offered his customers the choice: “Take the horse nearest the gate, or take none at all.” At least Hobson offered a reasonable alternative.

Bill Clinton offers no such thing. Here’s what the former president said at the Democratic National Convention:

We Democrats, we think the country works better with a strong middle class, with real opportunities for poor folks to work their way into it, with a relentless focus on the future, with business and government actually working together to promote growth and broadly shared prosperity. You see, we believe that "We're all in this together" is a far better philosophy than "You're on your own."

Here’s Clinton’s Choice: Either government must forcibly confiscate people’s wealth and shackle producers, or people just can’t work together.

This is truly ridiculous.

Not only do people not need government coercion in order to work together; government coercion stops them from working together in countless ways.

By imposing wage controls and myriad other job-killing regulations on businesses, by raising taxes, and by doling out corporate welfare (“business and government actually working together”), Democratic politicians (often in conjunction with their Republican counterparts) violate the rights of people of all income levels and destroy innumerable economic opportunities in the process.

When people are left free from government coercion—that is, when they live within a social system of capitalism—they are able to go into business together as they see fit, trade goods and services as they see fit, give to charity organizations as they see fit, and engage in joint ventures in countless other ways as they see fit. When government forces people not to engage with each other as they see fit, people can’t work together in those ways.

Clinton offers the absurd choice of government force or individual isolation. Capitalism makes possible both individual liberty and voluntary association.

How do Democrats keep coming up with this stuff?

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Creative Commons Image: World Economic Forum

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