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The Free Market Works If You Let It

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I read a lot of stuff from all over.  I do it for information and perspective.  I read liberal bloggers and conservative bloggers.  Seth Godin is an uber-liberal blogger.  He blogs daily and sometimes there is some stuff that can be actionable for you.

Today’s blog was about the failure of free markets to solve problems.  His entire pretense and framing are wrong.   Here is the money quote which shows you where he stands,

Except there are problems that the market hasn’t solved, and probably can’t. A century into this worldwide experiment, the market hasn’t solved mass education, it’s made obesity and health problems worse, and it has dumped an enormous amount of long-term toxic waste into the world where we all live. 

If we look at American history and the “problems” Godin talks about, we have used government-run solutions to the problems, not the free market.

-American public school education is a disaster and getting worse.  Why? Teachers’ unions and government bureaucracy.  We are spending more and more money on public education and getting worse results.  A minority of states have started to enable charter and private schools by giving parents control of the money.  Vouchers and anything else that allows entrepreneurs to solve the problem will eventually work.  We won’t be having cultural debates over the value of teaching CRT racism either.

-Obesity is a problem, accentuated by Covid.  Fat people had more trouble with Covid and were more likely to die from it if they contracted it.  Why are Americans obese?  It’s not because we are a richer society.  It’s because of the heavily lobbied government standards on food.  Our FDA-approved “food pyramid” isn’t about health. The food supply started to become government-controlled in the 1930s with FDR ushering in subsidies, price supports, and central control over what and how much farmers grew.  It was a political act, not one designed for health.  If we got rid of all the subsidies, price supports, and government control and put self-determination back with individuals in the field, our food supply and what, how we eat will change.

-Toxic waste is another issue.  China has intense government regulation-it is a communist society.  The environmental quality of life in China is far far worse than the US.  American industry has an economic incentive to be “clean”, especially with social media these days.

I don’t know Godin, but I suspect his answer to these problems would be more government spending, regulation, and programs.  We have spent trillions on programs and they don’t work.

The post The Free Market Works If You Let It first appeared on Points and Figures.


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