Saturday, March 13, 2004

The "free market" myth

Thom Hartmann thinks we should come clean about the realities of the "free market."

The idealized depiction of a perfectly functioning neoclassical system of supply and demand is, in reality, an abstraction created by massive state intervention. It is not, as is commonly claimed, an economic climate induced by the retreat of the state from commercial exchanges.

The list of governmental projects that enable commerce is long: issuing currency, providing avenues for legal redress, enforcing contracts, providing public education, subsidizing transportation and technology, using military force to protect investments or seize resources, and so on.