Re: Will the free market solve everything?

J. de Lyser (
Sun, 23 Feb 1997 08:32:48 +0100

At 21:00 22-02-97 -0800, you wrote:
John thanks for your mail, it's nice to see were more on one line on this
topic than in our previous argument on AAT. Your reply actually gave me new
hopes for a free market system.

one slight disagreement:
>People do not like problems, they will pay money to have them solved.
>Of course the market can not solve a problem if it is not recognized >as
such, but no other system can do that either.

>In other words the most effort will be diverted to solving those problems
>that most people judge to be most serious. As it is not reasonable to expect
>to solve all of the worlds problems at the same time, that seem like an
>efficient use of limited resources to me.

i think people have a list of priority problems, and the lowest on the
list, of those with money will never get solved. problem is that some of
the lowest priority problems for those with money can be some of the
highest priority problems for people with little money. A dangerous
situation for the rich if you ask me.

A good example is that of our failure to find a solution to increase the
standard of life in third world countries. Is it so strange that people who
live in a country where people die because there are not enough hospitals,
want to move to a country where they have hospitals for their pets ? This
is an example of a system without coordination on a global level. Now some
people on this list want to bring that coordination back to even smaller
levels of operation. Can't you see the problems that will imply ? Don't
look at it from a socialist or altruistic point of view, look at it from a
point of pure self interest. If we don't teach people to provide for
themselves, they will come and steal the wealth from those who have it. A
stable economy is just as important for poltical stability as vice versa.
This also goes for smaller levels of operation. No education results in a
poor standard of living, and this often results in criminal behaviour.

Education is the key to the future. A pure free market system can't
guarantee a fair amount of social mobility through education. As it is
based on keeping the 'have nots' dumb. The more difficult it will be for an
individual to break that circle the more limited his freedom if you ask me.

A free market system can work, but not without guarantees. I'm not talking
about giving away things or sharing the wealth here, i'm talking about
investing in people so that they will be able to work themselves into a
position where they can buy more of your services or goods. Make them able
to contribute to the wealth of society as a whole, instead of becoming
criminals or social parasites. A free market offers no guarantees for that,
however bad the state education system is, at least it does this somewhat.

A system which relies purely on charity to deal with these problems is
out of date and unrealistic. I think you'll find the new generations are a
lot more selfish than the older ones. Take it from me: pensions have seen
their last days. (most of your US tax dollar go to this, twice as much as
to the military, which comes second) Education should be first (and maybe
the only thing) on this list if you ask me.

J. de Lyser