Is Capitalism Dead?

By VA Blogger

Excellent—and surprising—editorial from the desk of the Washington Post, rebutting the claims of those who are only too happy about the financial crisis in order to blame free market ideology for our woes without quite realizing, as the sub-title of the editorial points out: The market that failed was not exactly free.

I don’t always get along with WaPo, but their rationality on the economy (see Sebastian Mallaby’s op-ed “Blaming Deregulation”) and free trade—and their willingness to take the kid gloves off when addressing Democrats on these issues—continue to be huge silver lining to their other tendencies.


Comments

  • “We’ll never know how this newly liberated financial sector might have performed on a playing field designed by Adam Smith.”

    Smith knew government should have a role in overseeing certain aspects of the market he depicted. Too often Smith is trotted out as positing a total “free market”. This is not accurate.

  • VA Blogger says:

    I don’t think the writers positioned Smith as an advocate of a 100% purely free market. In the last paragraph, they say that government interaction will and should have some role. However, there’s no question that Smith’s model is much more “free” than what WaPo pegs as the “distorted” markets we currently have.

  • G. Stone says:

    Smith knew government should have a role in overseeing certain aspects of the market he depicted. Too often Smith is trotted out as positing a total “free market”. This is not accurate.
    - edmundburkenator

    You are indeed correct. However, he would have a stroke after witnessing what we have done to the ” free market ”
    Equating our current system ( for lack of a better term ) as being slightly regulated as in the model promoted by Smith is a joke. The evolution of our system far exceeds Smiths rational model. We are in a vastly different area here.

  • CSR says:

    Is Loudoun Insider dead? Where is the Insider?

  • edmundburkenator says:

    “The necessaries of life occasion the great expense of the poor. . . . The luxuries and vanities of life occasion the principal expense of the rich, and a magnificent house embellishes and sets off to the best advantage all the other luxuries and vanities which they possess. . . . It is not very unreasonable that the rich should contribute to the public expense, not only in proportion to their revenue, but something more than in that proportion.”

    Adam Smith

    G, what do you think? Socialist? Or just out of context?

  • NoVA Scout says:

    Nicely stated, VB, re the Post’s economic op-ed positions. They indeed get it right 90% of the time. Their free trade positions are courageous and correct. (why you have to be on to be the other in these times baffles me). Mallaby is indeed an excellent writer on economic issues.

  • NoVA Scout says:

    correction: should read “why you have to be one to be the other . . .”

  • 200 Grande says:

    Too many Americans have an expectation of a continuous bull market. They even expect government to provide this for them (which it too often pretends to do). Government intrusions never keep the market continuously growing; so when the bear rears its head, Americans start to doubt free markets.

  • RichmondDem says:

    This cartoon from the Economist pretty much sums up my view of the question, “Is Capitalism Dead?”

    http://jeffreyhill.typepad.com/.a/6a00d8341d417153ef010535989544970b-pi

  • G. Stone says:

    G, what do you think? Socialist? Or just out of context?
    - edmundburkenator

    So now it is time to arm wrestler over “proportion ” isn’t it ?
    His quote is a far cry from the current cluster fox trot we call taxation.Whether it be percentage or process, our current system is not what any of these men had in mind.

    Next you will be telling me Smith is actually the inspiration behind the Obama economic plan.

  • G. Stone says:

    I thought we were talking about Smiths take on regulation and oversight. We have now moved to wealth distribution or re-distribution depending on your take.

  • edmundburkenator says:

    G, do you think Palin (ie Thatcher) even knows who Adam Smith is?

  • Jose Kinusee says:

    Stone,

    Yea the current “cluster fox trot” taxation system continues to allow the rich to avoid paying taxes and the working stiffs continue to get stiffed.

    BTW, if Joe the Plumber worked smarter instead of harder, he’d avoid paying taxes as well (as long as he owned the company). There are many ways to structure it to not pay a dime. . . . methinks Obama was trying to tell that numbskull this.

  • Jose Kinusee says:

    I meant to add that Palin doesn’t know s**t from apple butter about the history of our economic system. It is evident in her lack of intellectual curiosity and her inability to speak extemporaneously with reporters. Have you noticed that they guard her like she has the leprosy?

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