Taxpayers hope to receive quality public services in return for the wealth that the state expropriates from them, but the public policies through which government distributes these services often restrains growth and diminishes economic opportunity. Peruvian Atlas Network partner Contribuyentes por Respeto aims to promote public policies based on responsible liberty, open markets, and a subsidiary role of the state based on public services, consumption, and education sectors through relationships with media and policy makers. In order to make these ideas accessible to a broad public audience, the organization has produced an ongoing series of editorial cartoons and infographics that explain why economic freedom is vital for economic prosperity.
Cartoons that use satire to explain the concepts of economics and political philosophy can have a particularly strong impact because they distill complex ideas to their essence and make them readily understandable by a wide variety of readers. Below are two examples of cartoons from the Contribuyentes por Respeto series.
“If you only aim for inclusion … you fail in growth,” the first cartoon notes, exposing the failures Peru’s redistributionist policies by comparing them with shooting oneself in the foot.
The second cartoon shows the heavy and menacing characteristics of regulatory bureaucracy, and how they restrain productivity.
The organization’s infographics and regulatory alerts also inform readers in a compact space. The first graphic on the left warns about a proposed law that would establish workplace quotas, and the second explains the problems that ride-sharing service Uber has had operating in Peru and proposes that open markets will better serve riders.
Using the tools of graphic design, whether through satirical cartoons or other informative visuals, is an effective method for teaching intellectual ideas and criticizing those in power. The prevalence of social media and the widespread sharing it makes possible means that it’s more important than ever to use engaging, compact visual presentations as a strategy for spreading the ideas of liberty and keeping government power at bay.