I'll get more of these for the discussion with Franklin


  With their extremely high levels of regulation and government-granted monopoly status, I would say that utilities belong on the "government" side of the ledger. However it's less clear to me that industries such as health, education, agriculture, and transportation belong there.

  As I see it, lobbying must really be divided into two distinct categories -- that which aims to *secure* subsidies and other government-granted advantages, and that which seeks to *remove* or *prevent* harmful regulations or other government takings or controls. A good fraction (though probably not the majority) of lobbying by organizations involved in transportation and agriculture, and even the more highly regulated fields of health care and education, must be designed to ameliorate government intervention rather than to seek it.

  Of course lobbying by unions and by divisions of government itself should also be divided into these two categories, but in those cases I suspect a much higher percentage of the lobbying falls into the harmful category. So your overall point about government and its rent-seekers being the main lobbyists seems valid to me. But perhaps Franklin or someone else can show some examples of unions lobbying for more freedom. None come immediately to mind.

Yours in liberty,
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