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define economic freedom

Lonely-Bird
Posts: 50
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5/10/2016 11:55:39 AM
Posted: 6 months ago
much has been made by economists like von hayek and friedman as to what constitutes freedom. we have also heard much bleating by politicians as regards the wonders of local control and/or governmental overreach.

one wonders however as to how rigidity of ideology in the forum of the political economy can be construed as freedom. does freedom exist outside of the body politic? is freedom defined as rights? and are rights subject to majority rule? what are rights? is there a limit on rights? do rights exist outside the body politic as jefferson wrote but arendt saw differently?

the following is a case in point:

http://www.cantonrep.com...

in it we see that local control is superseded by a larger governmental unit. in it we see that the people's elected representatives decided to impose regulation which the larger governmental unit decried as somehow blocking economic freedom even though, imo, it did no such thing.

smith knew that those he called merchants would collude against the public interest. and so they do. capitalism moves to monopoly power centers. capitalism does not want nor does it thrive on competition. capitalism is simply a term to describe observations by various people of political economic activity by humans within a base framework of ownership of private property. activities such as division of labor are not arbitrarily symptomatic of capitalism. private property is. and the political economy that supports private property must then establish rules, regulations and boundaries of the transactions that flow from private property. those who wield power via economic position will seek to consolidate their power. the state is the only mechanism which can prevent the exploitation of the worker, the public and the environment against consolidate economic power.

in the case of the link the issue is one that will be more and more at the forefront as time progresses. it revolves around uber and lyft and whether or not they should be subject to regulation. my position is that they most certainly should be. the people acting through the mechanism of representative democratic institutions have the right and imo the duty to regulate transactions in the political economy. the state of texas has framed the issue as union vs freedom. imo this is disingenuous. we know that monopoly power centers will seek to suppress wages whenever and wherever possible. uber and lyft do precisely that.

as regards europe we have the following:
https://skift.com...
http://www.europarl.europa.eu...(2015)563398_EN.pdf
http://money.cnn.com...

and back in the us of a:
http://ww2.kqed.org...

the questions are quickly becoming what are these platforms? how do they impact not just costs as in low cost alternatives but how do they impact those who use their services and those who provide them as well?

these operations would have called black market at one time. does the fact that they are the end result of technology, somebody, somewhere writing an app, suddenly make them acceptable and attempts to regulate them infringement on freedom? the links show that these companies are not the wonderful, magical "new economy", "sharing economy" that their pr (read: agitprop) says they are but are simply corporations like any other corporation and that they seek to wield economic power in a monopolistic or oligopolistic manner. and we can see politicians in various places buying into the agitprop when they seek to impose control from above as the state of texas has with the city of austin.

freedom? uber and lyft and the so-called sharing economy are not freedom. they are corporations engaged in economic transactions and as such must be subject to rules, regulations and boundaries as established by the state. that they are the spawn of technology means nothing. in point of opinion it means in some ways that they should be more scrutinized as we can see the impact both positive and assuredly negative of technology.
BillSPrestonEsq
Posts: 131
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5/10/2016 1:08:15 PM
Posted: 6 months ago
At 5/10/2016 11:55:39 AM, Lonely-Bird wrote:
much has been made by economists like von hayek and friedman as to what constitutes freedom. we have also heard much bleating by politicians as regards the wonders of local control and/or governmental overreach.

one wonders however as to how rigidity of ideology in the forum of the political economy can be construed as freedom. does freedom exist outside of the body politic? is freedom defined as rights? and are rights subject to majority rule? what are rights? is there a limit on rights? do rights exist outside the body politic as jefferson wrote but arendt saw differently?


The concept of justice must have come before law though law is not always just.
The concept of justice I believe can be understood by everyone, and I would describe that as fairness and equality in law.
What is fairness and equality in law? Is it fair to steal? We all universally
understand this to be wrong. We understand it is not fair to steal. What about for some to steal from others? Obviously equality of law is necessary.
We understand certain actions to be fair and unfair based on our own desire to be treated fairly ourselves.
Any act of injustice is created by an act of force. Or rather the initiation of force. Theft, murder, rape, fraud, are all acts of force. This is how you can objectively define an 'unfair' or unjust act.
Freedom is the ability to live without coercion.

the following is a case in point:

http://www.cantonrep.com...

in it we see that local control is superseded by a larger governmental unit. in it we see that the people's elected representatives decided to impose regulation which the larger governmental unit decried as somehow blocking economic freedom even though, imo, it did no such thing.

smith knew that those he called merchants would collude against the public interest. and so they do. capitalism moves to monopoly power centers. capitalism does not want nor does it thrive on competition. capitalism is simply a term to describe observations by various people of political economic activity by humans within a base framework of ownership of private property.

I would define capitalism as the framework and not the observations. The observations are subjective where 'private ownership of production' is not.
Your statement "capitalism moves to monopoly power centers" is to say "private ownership of production moves to monopoly of power centers". I would also add that capitalism is by definition of private ownership also must be market based, as private ownership implies no central planning. If trade is to be market based then of course competition between producers is going to be competitive. This competition between producers is for the mutually beneficial act of exchange with consumers. Monopoly cannot therefore exist unless the consumers explicitly ask for it. That is unless monopoly is forced, which is why I am for free markets. Without force, markets are only dictated by supply and demand.

activities such as division of labor are not arbitrarily symptomatic of capitalism. private property is. and the political economy that supports private property must then establish rules, regulations and boundaries of the transactions that flow from private property. those who wield power via economic position will seek to consolidate their power. the state is the only mechanism which can prevent the exploitation of the worker, the public and the environment against consolidate economic power.


Private property is the product of one's labor. Private property is violated when another individual or collective uses force to obtain another's product of labor.
The state is only a mechanism of force. How it uses this force defines whether or not this force is just. The only force that can be considered just is in retribution or defense of the initiation of force of another.
If the state uses it power in any other way it becomes the exploiter.

in the case of the link the issue is one that will be more and more at the forefront as time progresses. it revolves around uber and lyft and whether or not they should be subject to regulation. my position is that they most certainly should be. the people acting through the mechanism of representative democratic institutions have the right and imo the duty to regulate transactions in the political economy. the state of texas has framed the issue as union vs freedom. imo this is disingenuous. we know that monopoly power centers will seek to suppress wages whenever and wherever possible. uber and lyft do precisely that.

as regards europe we have the following:
https://skift.com...
http://www.europarl.europa.eu...(2015)563398_EN.pdf
http://money.cnn.com...

and back in the us of a:
http://ww2.kqed.org...

the questions are quickly becoming what are these platforms? how do they impact not just costs as in low cost alternatives but how do they impact those who use their services and those who provide them as well?

these operations would have called black market at one time. does the fact that they are the end result of technology, somebody, somewhere writing an app, suddenly make them acceptable and attempts to regulate them infringement on freedom? the links show that these companies are not the wonderful, magical "new economy", "sharing economy" that their pr (read: agitprop) says they are but are simply corporations like any other corporation and that they seek to wield economic power in a monopolistic or oligopolistic manner. and we can see politicians in various places buying into the agitprop when they seek to impose control from above as the state of texas has with the city of austin.

'Economic powers' cannot without the use of force, gain any sort of real power. Their 'power' relies only on satisfying the demands of the market and nothing else.
Capitalism as it seems, is taking the fall for state power. 'Regulations' created by the state are law and so by definition is force. Force is not capitalism.

freedom? uber and lyft and the so-called sharing economy are not freedom. they are corporations engaged in economic transactions and as such must be subject to rules, regulations and boundaries as established by the state. that they are the spawn of technology means nothing. in point of opinion it means in some ways that they should be more scrutinized as we can see the impact both positive and assuredly negative of technology.

What would give the state the such unending wisdom and knowledge to be able to justly regulate any trade? The state is made of people, the same people that you would claim abuse their 'economic power' for their own interests. The difference between the two is that the state has the monopoly on legitimate force.
Chang29
Posts: 732
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5/10/2016 1:20:22 PM
Posted: 6 months ago
Economic liberty, that is for a person to be able to engage in mutually beneficial voluntary exchange with any other person (including foreigners), for any reason, at any time.

Economic liberty is the true measure of personal liberty. No third party or collective has any right to prevent voluntary transfer of goods or services. A legitimate role of government is to ensure that every person's economic liberty is protected. Also, that markets are free of violent coercion, and to assist in punishing those engaged in fraud or theft. Thou, in most cases government has Become the group that brings violence into the exchange.
A free market anti-capitalist

If it can be de-centralized, it will be de-centralized.
sarath749
Posts: 3
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5/12/2016 11:34:36 AM
Posted: 6 months ago
According to UN Food and Agricultural Organization, one out of every eight people is hungry in the world right now. Lack of water and food, poor living conditions, faster spread rate of deadly disease, and lack of security are the foremost factors of poverty. Uncontrolled Population growth gives rise to many other adverse results along with poverty; While Countries like Germany, Italy, Russia, and Japan showed negative population growth rates in 2014-2015. Everything is interrelated extremely. Controlled population growth cannot be achieved without adequate education to all people on the planet, especially in the least developed sub-Saharan countries, indicating the significance of equality.
http://www.postsmaster.com...
BillSPrestonEsq
Posts: 131
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5/13/2016 1:44:59 AM
Posted: 6 months ago
At 5/12/2016 11:34:36 AM, sarath749 wrote:
According to UN Food and Agricultural Organization, one out of every eight people is hungry in the world right now. Lack of water and food, poor living conditions, faster spread rate of deadly disease, and lack of security are the foremost factors of poverty. Uncontrolled Population growth gives rise to many other adverse results along with poverty; While Countries like Germany, Italy, Russia, and Japan showed negative population growth rates in 2014-2015. Everything is interrelated extremely. Controlled population growth cannot be achieved without adequate education to all people on the planet, especially in the least developed sub-Saharan countries, indicating the significance of equality.
http://www.postsmaster.com...

Education is exactly the answer. and just laws and free markets. But without education the other two are non existent. I would attribute most poverty to oppression, I think that is what most problems stem from because it does not allow a human or society to perfect his/her selves, and usually controls or suppresses access to information since usually a power seeks to keep it's subjects ignorant.
Lonely-Bird
Posts: 50
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5/19/2016 2:17:21 AM
Posted: 6 months ago
sorry, economic needs take so much of one's time...

the so-called free market does not exist. never did, never will. anyone who says otherwise is fooling themselves.

why?

the concept of private property does not exist without the body politic that is the state to support it. this is true also with all rights as noted by arendt. despite jefferson's flowery rhetoric which he didn't seem to apply to persons who had higher levels of skin pigment the creator gives no one rights. asserting a right without the ability to exeert it means you do not have it. you can struggle to achieve it and may win the struggle but it does not exist on less you can exert it.

so the state supports private property which is critical to capitalism and thereby in the minds of neoliberals the market. yet what else does the state do? well, it most certainly establishes laws regarding damage as well as fraud which also underpins the free market. and of course it allows the concept of limited liability. and even more crucially patent and copyright laws. these last two by their very existence are in opposition to the free market.

elsewhere it has been said that the free market/capitalism supports rights. this is painfully untrue. as ha-joon chang notes democracy is based upon one man, one vote. the market is based upon one dollar, one vote. indeed their is a quote floating around from tom perkins that says millionaires should have a million votes (paraphrased). and indeed we can see many instances of where the so-called free market would have been unsuccessful had not the state existed. during the growth of the railroads the state subsidized the free market via land for example. and of course much of the technology of today derives from government research or government contracts. as for rights it is interesting to note that during the period from the founding of the republic to the great populist uprisings of the late 1800's rights were limited. women could not vote. blacks while freed allegedly by the civil war and the resulting constitutional amendment were re-enslaved via jim crow. and of course the imposition by most famously pinochet in chile of so-called free market reforms resulted in massive oppression as well as massive hot capital flows.

it is also interesting to note that while the u.s. stood astride the world at the end of ww2 with a truly functioning economy the post-war growth and even the war itself were excellent examples of the state intervening in the economy. does the state need to centrally plan? of course not. but a failure to plan is a plan and we can see from the economies of chindia, japan, sk that planning economic/industrial growth which is NOT the same thing as central planning results in strong growth. financialized political corporatism as in the u.s. cannot compete when the state ameliorates the impact of the market and moves to work with the market.
BillSPrestonEsq
Posts: 131
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5/19/2016 9:49:09 PM
Posted: 6 months ago
At 5/19/2016 2:17:21 AM, Lonely-Bird wrote:
sorry, economic needs take so much of one's time...

the so-called free market does not exist. never did, never will. anyone who says otherwise is fooling themselves.

why?

the concept of private property does not exist without the body politic that is the state to support it. this is true also with all rights as noted by arendt. despite jefferson's flowery rhetoric which he didn't seem to apply to persons who had higher levels of skin pigment the creator gives no one rights. asserting a right without the ability to exeert it means you do not have it. you can struggle to achieve it and may win the struggle but it does not exist on less you can exert it.


Do I need a state to negotiate boundaries with my neighbor? No, we would need a third party arbitrator of some sort if one of us does something unreasonable in our negotiations. What is unreasonable? Well whatever it is we all seem to understand it, in fact the idea of justice and law came before law itself and is really only violated by the state, being an omnipotent and violent force that resides above the law.

Private property is just an extension of our labor. We all understand what private property is when it comes to our own property we worked for. Boundaries to land are pretty simple, Boundaries don't mean much when you are in the middle of nowhere, and seem to become pretty important in thickly settled areas. There is a reason for this and that is property values. Property values are dictated by the demand for the parcel, a couple of main factors that effect demand are labor put into the land and proximity of economic opportunity. What effects those factors originally were nearby transformable resources like fertile land, water, and probably perceived beauty as well I would assume.
Private property is a concept that can only exist WITHOUT the state. Otherwise the state would claim it all by force. Private property is just a negotiation between reasonable people. To understand it you only have to imagine an unclaimed territory and imagine settlers first arriving and building and farming. In the beginning no one can reasonably claim anything since everyone understands that the land is free to everyone. Only after putting labor into the land does it become valuable. And then once the land becomes thickly settled people provide economic opportunity through trade. People die, people move, land gets sold, only once the land has value are proper boundaries necessary.
These boundaries are constantly being negotiated now, without the state. We don't need a state, and free markets will happen if we are to progress. Saying we will never have free markets is silly. I might as well say, we will never have freedom. Same thing.

so the state supports private property which is critical to capitalism and thereby in the minds of neoliberals the market. yet what else does the state do? well, it most certainly establishes laws regarding damage as well as fraud which also underpins the free market. and of course it allows the concept of limited liability. and even more crucially patent and copyright laws. these last two by their very existence are in opposition to the free market.


The state does not create law, they currently have power over federal law, but law is a concept and exists everywhere, they exist between roommates for example, and there is no hierarchy for 'house rules'. There are made without a single violent overlord, but instead through peaceful voluntary negotiations. <basis for free markets
No need for limited liability corporations in a free market, liability should fall on the businesses and insurance companies that protect them.

elsewhere it has been said that the free market/capitalism supports rights. this is painfully untrue. as ha-joon chang notes democracy is based upon one man, one vote. the market is based upon one dollar, one vote. indeed their is a quote floating around from tom perkins that says millionaires should have a million votes

What does this have to do with rights? Rights are a concept of mankind based on our own interest to protect ourselves from the oppression of others.

(paraphrased). and indeed we can see many instances of where the so-called free market would have been unsuccessful had not the state existed. during the growth of the railroads the state subsidized the free market via land for example.

If there was not enough demand for railroads the state didn't do anything but buy votes with money they stole from taxpayers to build something not enough people actually wanted. If they did want it they would have paid for it. How does that translate into the market being 'unsuccessful'?

and of course much of the technology of today derives from government research or government contracts.

What does this have to do with free markets? The state stole money from taxpayers to fund things the state or it's benefactors wanted. Probably some back room deal to make someone profit at the expense of the taxpayer. This statement does not prove or even imply a failure of free markets.

as for rights it is interesting to note that during the period from the founding of the republic to the great populist uprisings of the late 1800's rights were limited. women could not vote. blacks while freed allegedly by the civil war and the resulting constitutional amendment were re-enslaved via jim crow. and of course the imposition by most famously pinochet in chile of so-called free market reforms resulted in massive oppression as well as massive hot capital flows.


Yes rights were limited by the state ok... more reason for free markets or freedom in general.

it is also interesting to note that while the u.s. stood astride the world at the end of ww2 with a truly functioning economy the post-war growth and even the war itself were excellent examples of the state intervening in the economy.

The depression was the fault of government and every recession/depression since.
That is because from it's inception the Fed has expanded and contracted credit and or money supply. Not the fault of free trade, just the opposite.

does the state need to centrally plan? of course not. but a failure to plan is a plan and we can see from the economies of chindia, japan, sk that planning economic/industrial growth which is NOT the same thing as central planning results in strong growth. financialized political corporatism as in the u.s. cannot compete when the state ameliorates the impact of the market and moves to work with the market.

The state working with the market? Yeah like when the state handed over trillions of dollars to a handful of bankers? Or like the never ending wars? Yes that is a truly symbiotic relationship.
You can have your 'planners'. The idea that some can 'work with the market' is hilarious. Somehow a small group of people will manipulate the market (not to their advantage of course) to somehow improve supply and demand? That is what the market is, supply and demand. What can someone or some group ever do to possibly improve on that? It's madness
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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5/21/2016 4:27:22 AM
Posted: 6 months ago
""absence of coercion of a man by his fellow man" - Milton Friedman's definition.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.