I always wonder why Americans treat regulation as something inherently bad.
Have you seen the assholes doing the "regulating?"
This phrase may as well read "bullshit ahoy." (To whom?)
is that in the Western world, there are strong positive correlations
[is a single correlation]
between the amount of regulation of the economy and societal equality
Define both terms.
With "regulation," you refer to this entity: a contradictory labyrinth of so-called rules, written vaguely, enforced arbitrarily, and interpreted politically.
If you cannot disagree with this assessment of reality, it should be obvious "societal equality" is a chimera.
Once you concede the "regulators" are, in fact, a bunch of bastards too, it's only reasonable to examine the forces at work: could I replace them with lesser bastards? If not, why?
The underlying morality is this:
The character of some people is to work hard, in order to achieve their vision of an improved world.
The character of lesser people is to draw an income for bullshitting, more or less swindled from the bullshitee.
It is the character of still others to draw an income under threat of violence, bullshit optional.
Finally, there are those whose character is to bullshit, and draw an income under threat of violence, and convince you to join their team.
It seems to me this last personality is the worst imaginable sort, and it happens to define elected rulers precisely. To imagine you, personally, had input into the miserable system these characters have set up, and therefore ought to abide it, is perfectly delusional.
and societal equality and general happiness.
Does an individualist still, in the 21st century, have to wheel out the corpse catalogue of every starved "communist" "national experiment" [read: power grab] to put this miserable piss-and-moaning (I only have two iPhones and a 47" flatscreen, and I serve time in an air-conditioned office doing unskilled labor, it's really hard, I want a new SUVVVVVVVVVV!) to bed?
Assuming that the free market is good, and therefore regulation is bad, however, is a purely ideological stance.
Suppose you observe politicians and politics (de facto "regulation") are bad.
While I understand that treating the government with suspicion is a healthy attitude that makes degeneration into tyranny less likely, but that is more an argument for government transparency
It's hard to formulate an analogy between two radically different sets of concepts, but here goes: say Linus announces The Kernel is no longer open.
Wait: say it just stops being open, and he won't say why.
Hmm... Say it quit being open a very long time ago, and if you suggest it was better that way, you're some kind of revolutionist nutball.
No! Say Microsoft and Apple partner up to eradicate the idea there ever was such a thing as openness, and you'd better get in line, because the hired help don't have any qualms about shooting your dog or daughter.
"Government transparency" is an oxymoron: we claim the authority to imprison and/or kill you, but we're sure we'd just be delighted with any program you care to run through us, pal!
Why the hell would anyone pretend to discover, or be surprised, the government is opaque?