Thursday, August 4, 2011
Give Free Markets a Try?
America has had a free market system since its inception, and to say that it is not a free market is pretty ridiculous in my humble economic opinion. If you want the market to be freer than it already is, then I urge anyone with that notion to please do a little bit of research on the living conditions of the average American during the Gilded Age.
I read this article today that sort of bothered me. It's about the perks that some CEOs were receiving even as the economy lay in shambles with over 8% unemployment.
Look, I'm not a god damned Communist, Socialist, Marxist or whatever. I don't believe in wealth distribution, or a market that is strictly controlled by the government. But I also know that all humans, whether they work for a private company or for the government, are susceptible to greed.
How can we say that the markets need to be freer when part of the reason we're in this mess is because of underregulation? Who here can honestly tell me that repealing Glass-Steagall was a good idea? We've seen what humans do to their fellow man when there isn't at least some regulation placed upon them. No one argues that the Gilded Age was not an age of exploitation, so why do we want to return to that?
What kills me is that people on both sides of the argument seem to place way too much confidence in the benevolence of which ever group they're trying to stroke. It's pretty ridiculous to assume that if given the chance private corporations would not screw over whoever they wanted in order to make more money. Why? Because the people at the top are fucking loaded and all they want is to be more loaded.
It's equally as ridiculous to assume that people in government don't enjoy the power that they have, and if they're not actively seeking to actually increase that power, they are at least always working to maintain whatever power they have. Money and power are the two things that have the potential to corrupt even the kindest of heart and purest of soul.
I'm a via media (middle way) type of guy. I understand that humans need to be as free as possible, but I also understand that too much freedom leads to injustice and ultimately less freedom. So can we please stop acting like the solution to all of our ails is to adopt an extreme? That is a request I pose to people on both sides of the aisle. I think history is on my side in such a request.