Escrivá and ignorance, when a minister insults

Escrivá and ignorance, when a minister insults

Being ignorant is not a drama. We are all imperfect and ignore things, also in our specialty. Actually, for those of us who love to learn, stung by an almost pathological curiosity, it is a blessing to be aware that you can always learn new things of others, of what surrounds us.

Last week, the Minister of Inclusion, Social Security and Migration, José Luis Escrivá called an imperfect economist, Daniel Lacalle, ignorant. Surely Lacalle ignores millions of things, but that’s not the bad thing. The bad thing is that Minister Escrivá had not done his homework. His first mistake was not knowing that Daniel Lacalle does not usually stitch without thread. His second mistake was to recommend a reading that he himself seemed unfamiliar with.

The minister pointed out the mysterious gap between the evolution of productivity and the evolution of employment in the recovery from the current pandemic crisis. In a series of tweets he compared this difference with that of other countries and with the evolution of these indicators in other recoveries of the Spanish economy. All good, if it weren’t for the fact that he was ignoring (among others) two important elements of the current economic situation: employment figures are inflated and the poor evolution of productivity it is fueled by the government’s labor policy.

Lacalle’s explanation, although brief for being a tweet, was forceful and correct.

Effectively, consider “employment” to workers in ERTE, even if they are decreasing, it is a crude and habitual trick of our leaders. On the other hand, the massive public job creation It is not a myth, it has been denounced in newspapers related to the regime several times this year.

In September it reached the record figure of 3.4 million workers. Faced with this response, Escrivá, who does not like to be contradicted, responded with “it is impressive to find so much ignorance in such a small space…” mentioning that Lacalle should read the methodological notes of the INE (National Institute of Statistics).

His message was answered by Lacalle using the methodological notes of the INE. End of discussion.

What impressed me most about this whole exchange were two things. A public servant, paid by the Spaniards, allows himself the luxury of publicly insulting an economist who points out his disagreement with a government policy. Because Escrivá is not on Twitter just like Escrivá: it’s a minister tweeting minister stuff. He did not reply to Lacalle: “You are wrong, my lord.” He launched an attack from the arrogance that was cheered by those related to the regime. It is true that Lacalle was applauded by critics.

A public servant allows himself the luxury of publicly insulting an economist who points out his disagreement with a government policy

However, among the reactions of the acolytes, and this was my second surprise, someone stood out stating that public employment is, after all, necessary and quality employment, and questioned whether it is a real problem. After all, both in the private sphere and in the public sphere, we speak of a job held by a Spaniard that develops your talent, right?

The fallacy behind that assumption is consider that the Government is a creator of wealth. The creators of wealth are not the States, but the entrepreneurs. And, although it is very simple to explain why, it is not so simple to convince people of it. Wealth creators are those who risk losing what is theirs, not what belongs to others. And they can lose it because they can’t predict the future.

The teacher Rodriguez Braun I remembered the joke the other day Jose Ortega y Gasset in which a seventeenth-century gentleman says goodbye to his wife saying: “Goodbye, my love! I’m off to the Thirty Years’ War!” For the same reason that the gentleman could not know whether the contest would last a month, a year, or thirty, the businessman cannot completely eliminate uncertainty.

Neither do governments, of course, but they don’t risk their assets and a businessman does. If, for some reason, the university where I work were to stop having students, the owners could only sell the buildings and try to recover some of what was lost. If the same thing happened at the Complutense University, the pockets of the rulers would not be affected and the result of the sale of the buildings would serve to solve the damage caused to the citizens who pay taxes, either at the present time or in the future. future.

The wealth creation implies discovery of opportunities. And for that, international planning, the 2050 agenda, or the alleged ignorance of rulers whose objective is the result of the next elections is not valid. For that, it is essential that those who are going to succeed or fail sniff out and discover those opportunities.

Even if they are capable, as is evident by analyzing the sophisticated economy of the 21st century, of developing all kinds of instruments and mechanisms that alleviate uncertainty and compensate for possible losses, they assume the risk. Everything else is excuses, arrogance, verbiage and deception.

I don’t mean to say that Escrivá is necessarily consciously misleading the public. It may be that he deceives himself and believes his story. I would almost prefer the former. Because the second option means that he also believes that the superhero is the State and the businessman is the supervillain. He also believes that the civil servant’s life is the best life. He also thinks that he knows, and that is why he does, and that without him (and the Government that enlightens us) there would be neither night nor day. He is also convinced that innovation is the fruit of a civil servant mind with a messianic destiny.

But there is something that worries me even more. These visionaries are the ones who have the education of our children in their hands. What image of the businessman, of the captain of finances, of the creators of wealth, are the children of today going to have, when they have to pay the enormous debt that these presumed omniscient are leaving them as an inheritance?


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