Tuesday, June 4, 2013

There ain't no such thing as a free lunch


There is also no such thing as a Free Market

A free market is a market structure in which the distribution and costs of goods and services, along with the structure and hierarchy between capital and consumer goods, are coordinated by supply and demand unhindered by external regulation or control by government or monopolies.

For those advocating for or against free market economies, my former challenge remains unanswered:


Free Markets?

The common myth is that today’s rich countries got rich through free-market, free-trade policies while today’s poor countries are poor because they have not used such policies.

However, starting from 18th-century Britain, through to 19th-century US, Germany, and Sweden, to late 20th-century France, Norway, Finland, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan, most of today’s rich countries have not become rich through free-market, free-trade policies. They used trade protectionism, subsidies, regulation on foreign investment, and other policy measures that are intended to protect and nurture their ‘infant industries’ against superior foreign competitors from abroad. Having practiced free trade most of the time, the Netherlands and Switzerland are partial exceptions to this, but even they do not fit today’s orthodoxy, as these countries refused to protect patents until the early 20th century.  WFR-Chang

It's a talking point

It is convenient for those on the left to point to the free market as a cause of our failures just as it is convenient for those on the right to point to it as a cause of our success.  Neither honestly believe it and those that do are undoubtedly unqualified to govern.  

The left likes to point to deregulation as the cause of our problems, the right likes to point to regulation as the cause, neither is correct.  The problem is misregulation influenced by business, labor, and social interests on both sides and until we realize that we will continue to get screwed.


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