Economist’s Morality

I just finished reading The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, a very entertaining novel about the maturation of a boy who grew up in Afghanistan and later emigrated to the United States.  In the book, there is a wonderful passage where the protagonist’s father lectures him on morality.  His speech is one with which most libertarian-oriented economists would certainly agree.

“Now, no matter what the mullah teachers, there is only one sin,  only one.  And that is theft.  Every other sin is a variation of theft.  Do you understand that?”

“…When you kill a man, you steal a life,” Baba said.  “You steal his wife’s right to a husband, rob his children of a father.  When you tell a lie, you steal someone’s right to the truth.  When you cheat, you steal the right to fairness, do you see?”

“…If there’s a God out there, then I would hope he has more important things to attend to than my drinking scotch or eating pork.”

The book is a quick read, but one that also has the ability to touch your heart.