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Failures of Laisses Faire Economics

Xer
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4/18/2010 7:40:28 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Every day, I hear friends, family, neighbors, bloggers, politicians, people on DDO, and others spewing failed arguments against laisses faire capitalism. Most of the time, the critiques are straw mans, either at crony or corporate capitalism, or completely missing the roots of the problems.

In this thread, I'd like to hear critiques of laisses faire and respond to them, and refute them. Anyone can ask questions and critique, and anyone can respond and refute. This should be fun.
Ren
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4/18/2010 7:51:35 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 7:40:28 PM, Nags wrote:
Every day, I hear friends, family, neighbors, bloggers, politicians, people on DDO, and others spewing failed arguments against laisses faire capitalism. Most of the time, the critiques are straw mans, either at crony or corporate capitalism, or completely missing the roots of the problems.

In this thread, I'd like to hear critiques of laisses faire and respond to them, and refute them. Anyone can ask questions and critique, and anyone can respond and refute. This should be fun.

Laisses Faire economics is detrimental to the majority because it proliferates Classism in a capitalistic construct due to the fact that the hierarchy is determined by profitability, and profitability is more easily bolstered and maintained with funds and resources to invest, rendering those with more money (the rich) at an extreme advantage. Furthermore, because of this effect, the only other people or entities that can compete are those who exploit those who are not exploitative or rich.

...which happens to be precisely how the American Economy, most of the Western Economy, and a large proportion of the Global Economy, is.
Xer
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4/18/2010 7:58:49 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 7:51:35 PM, Ren wrote:
Laisses Faire economics is detrimental to the majority because it proliferates Classism in a capitalistic construct due to the fact that the hierarchy is determined by profitability, and profitability is more easily bolstered and maintained with funds and resources to invest, rendering those with more money (the rich) at an extreme advantage. Furthermore, because of this effect, the only other people or entities that can compete are those who exploit those who are not exploitative or rich.

Everyone gets richer and happier and more free and everyone can compete competitively. What's the problem?

...which happens to be precisely how the American Economy, most of the Western Economy, and a large proportion of the Global Economy, is.

If only it were true that the US adhered to capitalism. The country would be a much richer and better place.
Kleptin
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4/18/2010 8:02:23 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 7:40:28 PM, Nags wrote:
Every day, I hear friends, family, neighbors, bloggers, politicians, people on DDO, and others spewing failed arguments against laisses faire capitalism. Most of the time, the critiques are straw mans, either at crony or corporate capitalism, or completely missing the roots of the problems.

In this thread, I'd like to hear critiques of laisses faire and respond to them, and refute them. Anyone can ask questions and critique, and anyone can respond and refute. This should be fun.

Laissez faire capitalism is fine, but it depends on the extent. It becomes a problem when young philosophers want to make decisions that change the lives of millions. I would rather trust my state to a ruthless dictator than a philosophical idealist. Simply put, the issue is practicality. I just plain don't like it when people support a philosophy they think is bullet-proof, or when they think that any philosophy can be adapted into practice in its purest form. It makes my skin crawl.
: At 5/2/2010 2:43:54 PM, innomen wrote:
It isn't about finding a theory, philosophy or doctrine and thinking it's the answer, but a practical application of one's experiences that is the answer.

: At 10/28/2010 2:40:07 PM, jharry wrote: I have already been given the greatest Gift that anyone could ever hope for [Life], I would consider myself selfish if I expected anything more.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:06:38 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:02:23 PM, Kleptin wrote:
Laissez faire capitalism is fine, but it depends on the extent. It becomes a problem when young philosophers want to make decisions that change the lives of millions. I would rather trust my state to a ruthless dictator than a philosophical idealist. Simply put, the issue is practicality. I just plain don't like it when people support a philosophy they think is bullet-proof, or when they think that any philosophy can be adapted into practice in its purest form. It makes my skin crawl.

Individual persons wouldn't make decisions that changes your life. I don't know where you're getting this idea. Why would you want a ruthless dictator destroying the economy and your life if the free market could reward you in a much better fashion?
Reasoning
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4/18/2010 8:07:33 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 7:51:35 PM, Ren wrote:
Laisses Faire economics is detrimental to the majority because it proliferates Classism in a capitalistic construct

False. The free market eliminates classism and renders capitalism obsolete.

due to the fact that the hierarchy is determined by profitability,

When did hierarchy come in?

and profitability is more easily bolstered and maintained with funds and resources to invest,

And how are you going to extract profit from workers when they could earn their full wage at a co-op?
"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
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:12:51 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 7:58:49 PM, Nags wrote:

Everyone gets richer and happier and more free and everyone can compete competitively. What's the problem?


That is a completely groundless statement. Countless studies and texts have indicated that there are clear problems with Classism in our Economy, and this has nothing to do with decisions that seem to coincide with other economical constructs. For example: http://books.google.com...

...which happens to be precisely how the American Economy, most of the Western Economy, and a large proportion of the Global Economy, is.

If only it were true that the US adhered to capitalism. The country would be a much richer and better place.


Okay, two things: first of all, this basically disproves your argument. Laissez Faire essentially means, "anything goes," or, relief from government sanctions, tarifs, restriction, etc. Thus, this should also mean that it would not be bound by a federal economic construct, thus meaning that one should be able to deviate from Capitalism, a such deviation that you have already deemed detrimental, under the precepts of a Laissez Faire economical perspective.

But, I completely disagree that Capitalism is some sort of "perfect construct."

Our country is as wealthy as it is because of exploitation. Almost entirely, actually. It's very sad. And, what's worse, is that Americans don't even do anything with it. The vast majority use it to live off of spam, chicken nuggets, and cupcakes, so to speak.
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:15:57 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:07:33 PM, Reasoning wrote:
At 4/18/2010 7:51:35 PM, Ren wrote:
Laisses Faire economics is detrimental to the majority because it proliferates Classism in a capitalistic construct

False. The free market eliminates classism and renders capitalism obsolete.


Capitalism is a basis. Lassiez Faire cannot exist without Capitalism. What sort of market do you think a "free market" is referring to?

"Lassez Faire" is a philosophy, not an economic construct.


When did hierarchy come in?


Really?

Base equality = Communism.


And how are you going to extract profit from workers when they could earn their full wage at a co-op?

What, exactly, are you proposing? That everyone in our entire economy freelance? What does that have to do with Lassiez Faire?
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:17:44 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:12:51 PM, Ren wrote:
That is a completely groundless statement. Countless studies and texts have indicated that there are clear problems with Classism in our Economy, and this has nothing to do with decisions that seem to coincide with other economical constructs. For example: http://books.google.com...

Write it out. I'm not reading a book.

Okay, two things: first of all, this basically disproves your argument. Laissez Faire essentially means, "anything goes," or, relief from government sanctions, tarifs, restriction, etc. Thus, this should also mean that it would not be bound by a federal economic construct, thus meaning that one should be able to deviate from Capitalism, a such deviation that you have already deemed detrimental, under the precepts of a Laissez Faire economical perspective.

Right. The federal government should allow the economy to "let it be." I haven't said anything that refutes capitalism.

Our country is as wealthy as it is because of exploitation.

Our country is as wealthy as it is because of capitalism. Exploitation is just a rhetorical insult.

Almost entirely, actually. It's very sad. And, what's worse, is that Americans don't even do anything with it. The vast majority use it to live off of spam, chicken nuggets, and cupcakes, so to speak.

The poor stay poor because of the government, not because of capitalism.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:22:34 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:15:57 PM, Ren wrote:
Capitalism is a basis. Lassiez Faire cannot exist without Capitalism. What sort of market do you think a "free market" is referring to?

"Lassez Faire" is a philosophy, not an economic construct.

Reasoning doesn't believe that capitalism should be used synonymously with the free market. Its simply a matter of semantics.

Really?

Base equality = Communism.

A society that puts equality before freedom will end up with neither. A society that puts freedom over equality will end up with a greater balance of both. Equality of opportunity is equality.
Ore_Ele
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4/18/2010 8:25:03 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
Do you actually plan on refuting things, like you said in your OP, or just throwing out talking points with nothing to back them up?
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:25:54 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:17:44 PM, Nags wrote:
At 4/18/2010 8:12:51 PM, Ren wrote:

Write it out. I'm not reading a book.


Exactly.


Right. The federal government should allow the economy to "let it be." I haven't said anything that refutes capitalism.


I don't think you really understood what I wrote, and I invite you to reread it and reconsider that response.

Our country is as wealthy as it is because of exploitation.

Our country is as wealthy as it is because of capitalism. Exploitation is just a rhetorical insult.


How can an economic construct render someone wealthy? It's just a construct, with infinite potential to result in success or failure, if it is viable.

The means through which this country became wealthy (under the construct of Capitalism, although this can and has been accomplished with just about every economic construct ever contrived) due to the exploitation of other countries.

I have no idea what you mean by, "a rhetorical insult."


The poor stay poor because of the government, not because of capitalism.

Ha. Indeed.

This feels like a checkmate in a football game.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:26:48 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:25:03 PM, OreEle wrote:
Do you actually plan on refuting things, like you said in your OP, or just throwing out talking points with nothing to back them up?

No one has given a valid critique yet. Only talking points. I can't refute something that doesn't stand in the first place.
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:28:01 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:22:34 PM, Nags wrote:

Reasoning doesn't believe that capitalism should be used synonymously with the free market. Its simply a matter of semantics.


As a matter of semantics, reasoning doesn't believe.

That said, that statement as it was meant to be written is irrelevant.

A society that puts equality before freedom will end up with neither. A society that puts freedom over equality will end up with a greater balance of both. Equality of opportunity is equality.

Laissez Faire =/= Equality.

Anyway, equality before freedom = Capitalism.
Kleptin
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4/18/2010 8:29:34 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:06:38 PM, Nags wrote:
Individual persons wouldn't make decisions that changes your life. I don't know where you're getting this idea. Why would you want a ruthless dictator destroying the economy and your life if the free market could reward you in a much better fashion?

I obviously wasn't very clear. Let's go about it a different way.

What would the impact of perfect socialism be on the economy?
: At 5/2/2010 2:43:54 PM, innomen wrote:
It isn't about finding a theory, philosophy or doctrine and thinking it's the answer, but a practical application of one's experiences that is the answer.

: At 10/28/2010 2:40:07 PM, jharry wrote: I have already been given the greatest Gift that anyone could ever hope for [Life], I would consider myself selfish if I expected anything more.
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:29:54 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:26:48 PM, Nags wrote:
At 4/18/2010 8:25:03 PM, OreEle wrote:
Do you actually plan on refuting things, like you said in your OP, or just throwing out talking points with nothing to back them up?

No one has given a valid critique yet. Only talking points. I can't refute something that doesn't stand in the first place.

I cited something that I said, and you basically told me to write out an entire body of studies for you.

Are you forreal? Go read a book, and if you want substantiation for my point, go click on that link and read a couple of abstracts.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:33:10 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:25:54 PM, Ren wrote:
Exactly.

Exactly what? I'm not telling you to read Human Action by Mises. This isn't a book club.

I don't think you really understood what I wrote, and I invite you to reread it and reconsider that response.

Oh, okay. Your point was that people could deviate from capitalism in a laissez faire system (without government). Correct? My question to you then, is, how so?

How can an economic construct render someone wealthy? It's just a construct, with infinite potential to result in success or failure, if it is viable.

Correct.

The means through which this country became wealthy (under the construct of Capitalism, although this can and has been accomplished with just about every economic construct ever contrived) due to the exploitation of other countries.

Correct.

I have no idea what you mean by, "a rhetorical insult."

It's not so much an insult, as it is intellectually dishonest. But you can go ahead and use it.

Ha. Indeed.

This feels like a checkmate in a football game.

If you look at where more government has existed throughout history (Communist China, Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany), these economies have been absolute failures and the people in them have received destruction of their freedoms. When the US was relatively free economically, early in their history, this is when the US experienced the most growth. Hong Kong is the closest to laissez faire today, and their economy is robust.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:35:08 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:29:34 PM, Kleptin wrote:
I obviously wasn't very clear. Let's go about it a different way.

What would the impact of perfect socialism be on the economy?

Aah, I see what you mean. There are many faults in socialism, which I won't expound on, since I'm sure you agree. What faults do you find in laisses faire capitalism?

At 4/18/2010 8:29:54 PM, Ren wrote:
I cited something that I said, and you basically told me to write out an entire body of studies for you.

Are you forreal? Go read a book, and if you want substantiation for my point, go click on that link and read a couple of abstracts.

Uh huh. This isn't a book club. You're supposed to summarize works and argue them in your own words.
Ore_Ele
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4/18/2010 8:36:29 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
OP - "I'd like to hear critiques of laisses faire and respond to them, and refute them."

Ren - "Laisses Faire economics is detrimental to the majority because it proliferates Classism in a capitalistic construct due to the fact that the hierarchy is determined by profitability, and profitability is more easily bolstered and maintained with funds and resources to invest, rendering those with more money (the rich) at an extreme advantage. Furthermore, because of this effect, the only other people or entities that can compete are those who exploit those who are not exploitative or rich."

Put simply, he is saying "the rich get richer while the poor are not able to compete." While that short statement that I put is just a talking point, his is not, because he went into WHY that is the case. The rich get richer because they already have the free capital to invest and grow their wealth. That in and of itself is not bad, however in the process, the poor workers are exploited in order for them to make even more wealth (safety conditions, working hours, child labor, payrate, etc...). While each of these decisions to exploit is a decision that the owner choose to or not to make, history has shown that they will make the choice to exploit, and those that do choose to exploit with drive those that choose not to exploit out of business, leaving none but the exploiters.
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:36:54 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:28:01 PM, Ren wrote:
As a matter of semantics, reasoning doesn't believe.

That said, that statement as it was meant to be written is irrelevant.

Indeed. Reasoning tends to be irrelevant.

Laissez Faire =/= Equality.

Laisses Faire = Equality. Equality in opportunity.

Anyway, equality before freedom = Capitalism.

Capitalism doesn't strive for equality. So I have no idea what you're talking about.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:39:59 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:36:29 PM, OreEle wrote:
Put simply, he is saying "the rich get richer while the poor are not able to compete." While that short statement that I put is just a talking point, his is not, because he went into WHY that is the case. The rich get richer because they already have the free capital to invest and grow their wealth. That in and of itself is not bad, however in the process, the poor workers are exploited in order for them to make even more wealth (safety conditions, working hours, child labor, payrate, etc...). While each of these decisions to exploit is a decision that the owner choose to or not to make, history has shown that they will make the choice to exploit, and those that do choose to exploit with drive those that choose not to exploit out of business,

What's the problem here?

leaving none but the exploiters.

This is we're you're wrong. This statement does not follow. Companies get rich by selling to consumers. The consumers can't buy the products and services of companies without wealth. The consumers can't get wealth without working or inheriting or saving or investing. The consumer won't work for an employer that does not pay him/her less than what that employee can get working or doing something else.
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:48:02 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:33:10 PM, Nags wrote:

Exactly what? I'm not telling you to read Human Action by Mises. This isn't a book club.


Actually, if you linked me, why wouldn't I? I'm on this site to learn just as much as I'm here to spread my knowledge and flex my intellectual nuts. I don't see how you can ever expect to win an argument if you aren't open to constantly learning about the subject about which you intend to debate.

Oh, okay. Your point was that people could deviate from capitalism in a laissez faire system (without government). Correct? My question to you then, is, how so?


However they want to. By the nature of the definition of a free market, the actions within that market should be able to reflect any economic construct, contingent on the locus of the action.

If you look at where more government has existed throughout history (Communist China, Soviet Russia, Nazi Germany), these economies have been absolute failures and the people in them have received destruction of their freedoms. When the US was relatively free economically, early in their history, this is when the US experienced the most growth. Hong Kong is the closest to laissez faire today, and their economy is robust.

My opinion is that you're correlating concepts that are circumstantially proximal.

Hong Kong is under a communist construct. Which completely dismantles your argument -- but -- their economy is robust because China has taken advantage of their own people by allowing the outsourcing of other countries to proliferate their own economic activity.

...well, to be fair, Hong Kong is governed by both GB and China, but that still diminishes your "failing economy" argument and, well, China as a whole is doing incredibly right now.

Nazi Germany was wildly successful until the Axis powers were defeated. Germany had an economy that coincided with the rest of Europe prior to the Nazi party's reign, but that economy still failed because Germany was raped in WWI.\

Russia was and is a mess. I'm not too well versed in Russian politics, economics, or history, though, to be completely honest.

The U.S. had such positive development in its early economy due to a combination of the Industrial Revolution and the World Wars.
Volkov
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4/18/2010 8:48:29 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:36:54 PM, Nags wrote:
Laisses Faire = Equality. Equality in opportunity.

Actually, no, not quite.

Creating "equality of opportunity," or any type of equality, means tinkering with naturally-built human societal hierarchies. That takes the might of an authority with its hands on the levers - government, religion, etc. Laissez-faire is the absence of this authority in the markets, meaning that those hierarchies are free to build and reign as they please.

This is why in capitalist countries we see these classes, why its hard for the poor to escape the poverty cycle, why companies and business, if they can get away with things, will try to, etc. Capitalism itself is based on hierarchy.

But, back to the "equality of opportunity" point. Laissez-faire, like I said, is the absence of any authority there. Those authorities, however, are what creates the equality of opportunity; their ability to work outside of the market hierarchy and make "fair" the playing field is what fulfills "equality of opportunity" in any sense of what you're talking about.
Ore_Ele
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4/18/2010 8:48:50 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:39:59 PM, Nags wrote:
At 4/18/2010 8:36:29 PM, OreEle wrote:
Put simply, he is saying "the rich get richer while the poor are not able to compete." While that short statement that I put is just a talking point, his is not, because he went into WHY that is the case. The rich get richer because they already have the free capital to invest and grow their wealth. That in and of itself is not bad, however in the process, the poor workers are exploited in order for them to make even more wealth (safety conditions, working hours, child labor, payrate, etc...). While each of these decisions to exploit is a decision that the owner choose to or not to make, history has shown that they will make the choice to exploit, and those that do choose to exploit with drive those that choose not to exploit out of business,

What's the problem here?

leaving none but the exploiters.

This is we're you're wrong. This statement does not follow. Companies get rich by selling to consumers. The consumers can't buy the products and services of companies without wealth. The consumers can't get wealth without working or inheriting or saving or investing. The consumer won't work for an employer that does not pay him/her less than what that employee can get working or doing something else.

The company doesn't have to sell to the poor that they are exploiting, they sell to others, namely the rich that are doing the expoiting and to other nations. Do you think that Nike sells its $100+ shoes to the kids that make them? No, do you think Nike cars that those kids can't buy those shoes? No.

You make a faulty assumption. Employees can only go to a better paying job if there is one available. If the job market is "exploited by company A, exploited by company B, exploited by company C, or have no job and stave to death" or in many cases, it is only one company that employs the entire town and exploits the entire town.
"Wanting Red Rhino Pill to have gender"
wjmelements
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4/18/2010 8:49:50 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
If you're going to use the french term, use French spelling.

Laissez-faire.
in the blink of an eye you finally see the light
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:53:48 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:35:08 PM, Nags wrote:


Uh huh. This isn't a book club. You're supposed to summarize works and argue them in your own words.

That's what I did?

Ha.
Ren
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4/18/2010 8:56:03 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:36:54 PM, Nags wrote:

Indeed. Reasoning tends to be irrelevant.


Attempting to be derisive when you're wrong is tragic. When someone regards you like that, it may be wise to reassess what you wrote before you reply.

Anyway, equality before freedom = Capitalism.

Capitalism doesn't strive for equality. So I have no idea what you're talking about.

No, it doesn't. Meant to write Communism, but whatever, it's a moot point anyway, as it's largely irrelevant to the topic at hand.
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:56:34 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:48:02 PM, Ren wrote:
Actually, if you linked me, why wouldn't I? I'm on this site to learn just as much as I'm here to spread my knowledge and flex my intellectual nuts. I don't see how you can ever expect to win an argument if you aren't open to constantly learning about the subject about which you intend to debate.

I'm not going to make you read an 1,000 page book.

However they want to. By the nature of the definition of a free market, the actions within that market should be able to reflect any economic construct, contingent on the locus of the action.

Only if govenrment interferes.

My opinion is that you're correlating concepts that are circumstantially proximal.

Hong Kong is under a communist construct. Which completely dismantles your argument -- but -- their economy is robust because China has taken advantage of their own people by allowing the outsourcing of other countries to proliferate their own economic activity.

Uhh, no. China is a communist construct. Hong Kong is the most capitalist country in the world. Hong Kong is owned by China, but China doesn't control it.

...well, to be fair, Hong Kong is governed by both GB and China, but that still diminishes your "failing economy" argument and, well, China as a whole is doing incredibly right now.

The people of China aren't doing well, not at all.

Nazi Germany was wildly successful until the Axis powers were defeated. Germany had an economy that coincided with the rest of Europe prior to the Nazi party's reign, but that economy still failed because Germany was raped in WWI.\

The economy failed because the government was running the economy and running huge deficits and debt that led to hyperinflation. The economy was good for a very short while, then it failed.

Russia was and is a mess. I'm not too well versed in Russian politics, economics, or history, though, to be completely honest.

K.

The U.S. had such positive development in its early economy due to a combination of the Industrial Revolution and the World Wars.

And extremely minimal regulations, laws, and economic interventionism. The World Wars weren't economically beneficial to the US either. Wars destroy wealth, they don't create it.
wjmelements
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4/18/2010 8:58:37 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:48:50 PM, OreEle wrote:
You make a faulty assumption. Employees can only go to a better paying job if there is one available. If the job market is "exploited by company A, exploited by company B, exploited by company C, or have no job and stave to death" or in many cases, it is only one company that employs the entire town and exploits the entire town.

The employee will tend towards the company that "exploits" the least, and the companies that "exploit" the most will find themselves without employees.
Try hiring a teenager for a dollar and hour and see how easy it is to exploit.
Try hiring an illegal immigrant for three dollars an hour and see how easily he is exploited.
People will not work for the person that pays too little. They will work for the person that pays most. You can't hire a teenager for a dollar because he'd rather not work and you can't hire an illegal immigrant for three because they can work for five easily for someone else.

Essentially, "exploitation", also known as employment, is the rational choice of the employee. The employee will consider his other choices, estimate opportunity cost, and act.
in the blink of an eye you finally see the light
Xer
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4/18/2010 8:59:12 PM
Posted: 6 years ago
At 4/18/2010 8:48:29 PM, Volkov wrote:
Actually, no, not quite.

Creating "equality of opportunity," or any type of equality, means tinkering with naturally-built human societal hierarchies. That takes the might of an authority with its hands on the levers - government, religion, etc. Laissez-faire is the absence of this authority in the markets, meaning that those hierarchies are free to build and reign as they please.

This is why in capitalist countries we see these classes, why its hard for the poor to escape the poverty cycle, why companies and business, if they can get away with things, will try to, etc. Capitalism itself is based on hierarchy.

But, back to the "equality of opportunity" point. Laissez-faire, like I said, is the absence of any authority there. Those authorities, however, are what creates the equality of opportunity; their ability to work outside of the market hierarchy and make "fair" the playing field is what fulfills "equality of opportunity" in any sense of what you're talking about.

Lol wut? Equality of opportunity exists in laissez faire because no authority can increase or decrease this opportunity, therefore it stays neutral. Equality of opportunity does not exist outside of laissez faire because authorities do decrease and increase opportunity.