It Takes a Village: Scarcity, the NCAAs, and the Decline of U.S. Manufacturing
I don’t remember seeing any of this type of story last year. But this year, Socialism stories abound from the Midwest.
My ex-roommate* sends this link to a story about Butler Bulldogs’s Senior Matt Howard’s family being able to attend the NCAA Finals tonight in Houston (video link here).
Luke Winn of Sports Illustrated covered the macro territory. The 12.7% unemployment rate, up from a few years ago and still 2nd-highest in the state of the 92 counties. The population of “about 13,000,” which puts the decline since I graduated high school at worse-than-Detroit levels—but that makes sense since most of the factory work over the previous forty years was Ford-related as the town once referred to as “Little Detroit” lost competitors to larger areas and consolidation.
Winn’s article, not to mention several other recent pieces about Howard’s childhood make it clear that it really does take a village. From the NYT piece:
His mother, Linda, who credited her faith for helping her raise 10 children, said strangers would stop and ask, “Are you the lady with all the kids?” before dropping off bags of clothes. “Maybe everything didn’t fit,” she said. “But we didn’t complain.”
Bryan Caplan’s noted in his presentation at Kauffman that he knows no one who is liquidity-constrained in their ability to raise children; rather, it’s time allocation that stops them. I suspect he needs to get out more.
And now the city with 12.7% unemployment and a dim future has once again reached into its collective pockets to make certain that Matt Howard’s family gets to see their son’s/brother’s final college game, which also happens to be for the NCAA Championship. To bet on that game, fans can put their trust on sites such as w88.com.
From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.
As I said, I didn’t see stories like this last year. Last year, there was still another year for Howard and the Bulldogs. Now, there is no possible future NCAA Championship; this is the last time this can ever happen. An economist would tell you that people recognized the Scarcity Value and dug into their pockets accordingly.
So not only did it take a Village to help as best they could to raise the ten Howard children, it took a Village to enable the family to go to Houston to see now-senior Matt Howard and the rest of the Butler Bulldogs play—win or lose; I hope win—for the NCAA Championship.
Ex ante, it’s a great decision. Ex post, it will still have been one.
Musical accompaniment: Tom T. Hall, of course.
*For whom Mike Mandel took a picture of Tyler and Natasha Cowen at last week’s Kauffman Economic Bloggers Forum, since he and Tyler were once ranked (by Tyler) as the #1 and #2 chess players in the area. Sadly, neither went into the sport as a full-time professional.
“From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs”
When it is volunteered it is not Socialism. Socialism is a theory on managment and ownership of the means of production and allocation of resources across a fixed, chosen, and defined population.
Out of Curiousity, why did you bring up the word “Socialism” in this post? It has nothing to do with the story at all.
It’s the Socialist sentiment and Socialist actions. Economically rational people would have had no interest in helping out in a case like this. Think of it as a stake in the heart of 95% of all economic theory and 100% of all economic theory currently being applied in the current financial crisis.
Yerom is correct. Why is socialism even mentioned?
This is volunteers coming together to help the family out. Where’s the socialism?
Kaleberg – you missed the one difference here. The quote would be more correct this way
“From each, taken by force, according to his ability, to each according to his needs.”
The difference is Socialism redistributes on the barrel of a gun. If you don’t see the difference I’m not sure I can explain it to you.
Islam will change
Socialism? I viewed a few stories about Matt Howard and I don’t recall the local or state government requiring citizens to pay a portion of their pay to send Howard’s family to the games….
“It’s the Socialist sentiment and Socialist actions. Economically rational people would have had no interest in helping out in a case like this.”
–This quote is a great example of why the left still doesn’t get it. Maybe it’s self-interest that liberals have trouble understanding, which would explain the contributions to charity by the likes of Biden, Gore, etc….but that’s a cheap shot. Plenty of citizens on the Left AND the Right donate and contribute their time to endeavors that benefit the public good, even though they may not gain directly as an individual. You help others bale their hay because it makes for a better community. The government forcing you to do it would create a poor one.
i know connersville. i grew up in a smaller town just north of there (we played them in several sports, of which they were a powerhouse back in the day), my dad started there in ’66 when it was a philco plant and retired in ’94 when it was visteon. even through all the economically tumultous times it’s stayed a close-knit community. i believe the original way of getting the howard’s to houston was via jim irsay’s private jet, of which he offered; however, somehow the ncaa viewed that as a no-no (you know, left-handed compensation and such) and the community voluntarily stepped up to the plate…again. good on them.
p.s. my wife and 4 nieces and nephews are butler grads and 1 niece is a sophomore. it was exciting to watch. even in ultimate defeat.