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The Inherent Anatagonism of Markets

Reasoning
Posts: 4,456
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4/2/2011 8:17:36 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Markets breed a natural opposition to progress. For example, a dentist does not want to see his job, life, and career destroyed by a toothpaste that eradicates all tooth decay.

All market systems induce reactionary opposition when a new innovation wipes out an entire industry. Markets discourage real progress and it naturally pits producers against each other.

Markets skew economic incentives all the time. Bankers, reporters, and others profit from war. Dentists, doctors, and medical professionals profit from disease. It goes on and on.
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
Chrysippus
Posts: 2,173
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4/2/2011 8:57:35 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 8:17:36 PM, Reasoning wrote:
Markets breed a natural opposition to progress. For example, a dentist does not want to see his job, life, and career destroyed by a toothpaste that eradicates all tooth decay.


Markets also provide the only real incentives for progress. If some inventor comes up with a way to keep our teeth in good shape without expensive dentists, the market would snap up his product so fast the dentists would cry. The dentists are not the market; the dentists provide a service demanded by the market. That miracle toothpaste would change the demand for dentists, and thus the number and cost of the dentists supported by the market.

All market systems induce reactionary opposition when a new innovation wipes out an entire industry.

Those innovations create new industries as well as getting rid of older, inefficient or outdated industries. Those that react in opposition find themselves left out of the new prosperity.

Markets discourage real progress and it naturally pits producers against each other.

"Real" progress is a squirm word. The market encourages any progress that reduces the cost or increases the supply of a good or service with unfulfilled demand. The produces compete with each other to provide that progress.


Markets skew economic incentives all the time. Bankers, reporters, and others profit from war. Dentists, doctors, and medical professionals profit from disease. It goes on and on.

True. What is wrong with this, exactly?
Cavete mea inexorabilis legiones mimus!
GeoLaureate8
Posts: 12,252
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4/2/2011 9:01:53 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 8:57:35 PM, Chrysippus wrote:
At 4/2/2011 8:17:36 PM, Reasoning wrote:
Markets skew economic incentives all the time. Bankers, reporters, and others profit from war. Dentists, doctors, and medical professionals profit from disease. It goes on and on.

True. What is wrong with this, exactly?

Because the incentive for profit is propagating war and disease. Duh!

Unless you see nothing wrong with war and disease in which case I seriously have to question your sanity.
"We must raise the standard of the Old, free, decentralized, and strictly limited Republic."
-- Murray Rothbard

"The worst thing that can happen to a good cause is, not to be skillfully attacked, but to be ineptly defended."
-- Frederic Bastiat
TheAtheistAllegiance
Posts: 1,251
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4/2/2011 9:16:24 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I forget the official name of the concept, but it is a real phenomenon. Companies will purposely design products to fail after a certain point in time in order to keep customers coming back for more, and the same goes for technological advancements that might be suicide for an industry, such as an everlasting gum flavor or something.

Even so, the incentive of competition is much stronger; if Nissan was able to design a car that could run on a single charge of electricity for 50 years, then it certainly wouldn't pass up the opportunity to gain profit. I'd imagine that markets are only slightly antagonistic toward progress, while for the most part, they're the only source of it.
Chrysippus
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4/2/2011 9:17:20 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 9:01:53 PM, GeoLaureate8 wrote:
At 4/2/2011 8:57:35 PM, Chrysippus wrote:
At 4/2/2011 8:17:36 PM, Reasoning wrote:
Markets skew economic incentives all the time. Bankers, reporters, and others profit from war. Dentists, doctors, and medical professionals profit from disease. It goes on and on.

True. What is wrong with this, exactly?

Because the incentive for profit is propagating war and disease. Duh!

Unless you see nothing wrong with war and disease in which case I seriously have to question your sanity.

No, they are bad, admittedly. That's not the question though; the question is, why is doctors profiting from their efforts to fight disease bad? There are sufficient safeguards against doctors deliberately spreading disease to increase their profits; we no longer allow war correspondents create a market for themselves. So, this point is moot, unless you have some problem with doctors earning a profit from their labor.
Cavete mea inexorabilis legiones mimus!
Cody_Franklin
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4/2/2011 9:19:15 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 9:16:24 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
I forget the official name of the concept, but it is a real phenomenon. Companies will purposely design products to fail after a certain point in time in order to keep customers coming back for more, and the same goes for technological advancements that might be suicide for an industry, such as an everlasting gum flavor or something.

Are you thinking of planned obsolescence?
Chrysippus
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4/2/2011 9:20:17 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 9:16:24 PM, TheAtheistAllegiance wrote:
I forget the official name of the concept, but it is a real phenomenon. Companies will purposely design products to fail after a certain point in time in order to keep customers coming back for more, and the same goes for technological advancements that might be suicide for an industry, such as an everlasting gum flavor or something.


The term is "planned obsolesence," and it has a lot less to do with product turnover than outside market forces and the desire to outsell one's competitors.

Even so, the incentive of competition is much stronger; if Nissan was able to design a car that could run on a single charge of electricity for 50 years, then it certainly wouldn't pass up the opportunity to gain profit. I'd imagine that markets are only slightly antagonistic toward progress, while for the most part, they're the only source of it.

Exactly.
Cavete mea inexorabilis legiones mimus!
Grape
Posts: 989
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4/2/2011 9:47:48 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 8:17:36 PM, Reasoning wrote:
Markets breed a natural opposition to progress. For example, a dentist does not want to see his job, life, and career destroyed by a toothpaste that eradicates all tooth decay.


If someone starts making that toothpaste than he can't do anything about it. Too bad for him; times change.

All market systems induce reactionary opposition when a new innovation wipes out an entire industry. Markets discourage real progress and it naturally pits producers against each other.


No, the market encourages progress because the people who actually make the progress reap all the benefits. The people who oppose the new ways can't do much about it.

Markets skew economic incentives all the time. Bankers, reporters, and others profit from war. Dentists, doctors, and medical professionals profit from disease. It goes on and on.

Any medical professional who tried to spread disease would be held accountable for this heinous offense. The same can be said of those who perpetrate other forms of violence to profit from it. And we need not describe the state's record on these matters; it is far worse than the free market could ever achieve.
Rob1_Billion
Posts: 1,300
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4/2/2011 9:57:04 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I of course share Reasoning's dread of competitive inefficiency. Like my heater blower motor went out in my car a couple months back. If I took it into a shop, they would have just made me replace it. Hundreds of $ for the part, punk me in my a55 for labor costs... My friend rebuilt the motor for $50 (the wiring inside just needed to be replaced and charged me for the hour it took him to work on it). Automechanics are constantly taking advantage of people who are not technically savvy and this one particular market is a good example of how much money we are throwing out the window.
kfc
mongeese
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4/2/2011 10:48:51 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
Reasoning, the scenario there would be "creative destruction." It's really rather unavoidable; a super toothpaste is created, so fewer dentists are needed. Many dentists would lose jobs, but more efficient jobs would be created in manufacturing this toothpaste. If you find this scenario so abhorrent, what would you intend to do about it? Would you stop the super toothpaste from being invented? Would you subsidize dentists so that they can still afford to live while meeting a lower demand with constant supply, therefore lowering costs? There is no solution superior to the market solution, so why criticize the market?
Chrysippus
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4/3/2011 9:02:12 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/2/2011 9:57:04 PM, Rob1_Billion wrote:
I of course share Reasoning's dread of competitive inefficiency. Like my heater blower motor went out in my car a couple months back. If I took it into a shop, they would have just made me replace it. Hundreds of $ for the part, punk me in my a55 for labor costs... My friend rebuilt the motor for $50 (the wiring inside just needed to be replaced and charged me for the hour it took him to work on it). Automechanics are constantly taking advantage of people who are not technically savvy and this one particular market is a good example of how much money we are throwing out the window.

This is an example of competition providing services at lower prices. The normal shops wouldn't provide the service at an acceptable cost, so there was an opportunity for another agent (your friend) to provide the service at a lower cost and win the competition for your business.
Cavete mea inexorabilis legiones mimus!
Reasoning
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4/3/2011 9:46:26 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Is everyone but Rob blind?

Look, mechanics take advantage of people all the time, because they know more about the field than most of their customers, by definition.

This is called information asymmetry.[1] In libertarian communism there would not be this inherent antagonism between producer and consumer, between producer and producer.

1 http://en.wikipedia.org...
"What we really ought to ask the liberal, before we even begin addressing his agenda, is this: In what kind of society would he be a conservative?" - Joseph Sobran
mongeese
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4/3/2011 9:52:16 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 4/3/2011 9:46:26 AM, Reasoning wrote:
This is called information asymmetry.[1] In libertarian communism there would not be this inherent antagonism between producer and consumer, between producer and producer.

And you know this because...?

How would you avoid the creative destruction of awesome toothpaste? How would you ensure that all repairmen share everything relevant about a situation?
Sieben
Posts: 2,736
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4/3/2011 10:00:48 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
The problem is that you think this applies to only markets. But every human action is gained at maximizing (psychic) profit.

Your proposed solution is one where everyone's interests are harmonized. You call it libertarian communism. A place where every interaction isn't some irritating arbitrage task. In real life this is called "a firm".

Firms are "anti-market" in that they are NOT markets. They are remedies to market problems like the ones you describe. Sometimes it is worth dealing with the market though, so thats why the world isn't one giant firm i.e. communism.
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