My comment points out that activities which have not been
done are more important than those which have (and which are
logged in the records).
Henry Hazlitt discusses how the window of a baker's shop is
destroyed by a young hoodlum, so the baker hires a glazier,
and the glazier now has more money, and so some say that the
destruction was good for the economy.
He criticizes how people only see what is there (the money
the glazier now has), but fail to see what is not there:
The baker planned to buy a new suit, but he cannot do so now,
because he had to give his money to the glazier.
|The people in the crowd were thinking only of two parties to
|the transaction, the baker and the glazier. They had forgotten
|the potential third party involved, the tailor. They forgot
|him precisely because he will not now enter the scene. They
|will see the new window in the next day or two. They will
|never see the extra suit, precisely because it will never be
|made. They see only what is immediately visible to the eye.
Some of the thinking of Hazlitt goes back to a text called
"Ce qu’on voit et ce qu’on ne voit pas" by Frédéric Bastiat
|Entre un mauvais et un bon Économiste, voici toute la différence :
|l’un s’en tient à l’effet visible ; l’autre tient compte et
|de l’effet qu’on voit et de ceux qu’il faut prévoir.