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Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Santarchy: Professor Noam Chomsky's 1997 Lecture at Northeastern University- The Myth of The Free Market

Source: Santarchy- Professor Noam Chomsky-
Source: Santarchy: Professor Noam Chomsky's 1997 Lecture at Northeastern University- Free Market

Anyone who tells you they believe in free markets and a complete private economy, unless they are a classical Libertarian, like a Ron Paul, you should be highly skeptical. Because there's no such thing. The United States having one of the largest if not largest private sectors in the World, that's made our economy the largest in the world, with millions of people immigrating to America every year, has a significant public sector with a significant safety net. And regulates the private economy as well, with a lot of strong regulations. The United States Federal budget is around 3.7T$, our Federal budget is larger than most economies in the world. And in my opinion and a lot of others it's too big, but if our Federal budget was an economy it would be the fifth largest economy in the world. Unless you believe in things like child labor, or slave labor, or unsafe working conditions, employers being allowed to discriminate against their workers based on race, ethnicity, gender, etc, or at least you don't believe those things should be illegal, then you don't believe in free market economics. That the state has a role in the economy.

What the United States and the rest of the developed world has, are private markets. We have private sectors, we all have large private sectors. All producing in the neighborhood of a trillion dollars or more each and every year. But there not free in the sense that they can do whatever they want to do. They are all subjected to regulations and taxes. The only question is, to what degree do you regulate and tax them. And each of these countries have their own approach to this. With Europe being similar, but different from America and even Canada. Actually a lot of the developing world now has significant private sectors as well. And have moved away from state ownership (or Marxism) like China, India, Brazil, Russia, Mexico and others. All these countries are very large and all have an economy of a trillion dollars or more. China a Communist Republic now has the 2nd largest economy in the world.

The question when you're talking about capitalist economies, is not whether they are free, or not. But to what extent their markets are private. And to what extent does the state play a role in their economy. How much does it tax and regulate and to what degree do they have a welfare state, or safety net. But they aren't free, but they are private which is different. A true free market which is what Professor Ayn Rand called for, would be an economy with no regulations and taxes. Business's would be able to operate at will without having to follow government laws and regulations. Which is what a lot of Libertarians argue for today. But in a true free market there wouldn't be a government or taxpayer funded subsidies either. Everyone and every business would have to make it on their own and wouldn't be eligible for subsidies and bailouts when they run into financial trouble. If you run your business into the ground, unless you can get a bank, or private loans from individuals, you'll go out of business. Because government won't be there to bail you out. And that type of economy and economic system simply don't exist anywhere. 

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