Sunday, June 22, 2008

Ode to a Rent Seeker

From Public Choice 48:271-272, by Charles K. Rowley:

I aim to seek out every rent
be it honest or be it bent
I seek out rent on every margin
let fools engage in wealth enlarging
Some may shirk whilst others toil
I spend my time on fertile soil
Government transfers I endorse
as a highly fruitful income source
Receipts in excess of gains foregone
mean others lose what I have won
With outlays less than Tullock cost
no-one can argue that I have lost
Stigler and Peltzman tell the truth
I make more than Babe(y) Ruth
Rectangles win, trapezoids lose
No wonder Harberger sings the blues
I spend upfront with great delight
To seize a durable monopoly right
Give me monarchs, divine right kings
for then the monopoly market sings
Congress I accept, even Tip O'Neill
though there rent margins tend to reel
Wealth is still transferred for all to see
but at a much greater cost to G.N.P.
God protect me from the final blow
when all the margins of rent are low
Let the margins be many and always high
so that I shall thrive 'till the day I die.

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