How Economic Policy affects the goal of Self Governance
Cross posted at TMR here.
Recently I wrote about Self Governance and the Moral Standard. Today I would like to continue in the theme of Self Governance and how Economic Policy can either move our Nation toward or away from that goal.
First I need to define some terms for the purpose of this discussion. In my view there are only three basic views on economic policy, the first is the Free Market, the second is Keynesian Free Market, and the third is the Socialist Market. I am sure that many will call me naive or uneducated in the realm of economics, and I am fine with that. I don’t have a degree in economics and to be honest my knowledge of economics is limited, but, as will become apparent, that does not make what I say any less relevant.
The Free Market.
My understanding of the Free Market is that the Government has limited impact on market activities. With this the Government does not try to effect social change via the market. The consumer, aka We The People, hold a vast amount of power over the free market regardless of whether they own stock or have a vote on the board of any given Corparation. The consumer holds the ultimate vote, whether or not to consume any given product. Obviously this lends itself to Self Governance. The consumer, in choosing what to buy and when to buy it, directs the corparation on what to produce and at what price to sell it’s products. In the Free Market the Government should also limit it’s want for tax revenue from Corparations, being that the Government has no role in the production or distribution of the goods and services produced by the Corparation. This is not intended to mean that Corparations pay no taxes, rather the intent is that they not be forced into a pay to play philosophy such as Keynesian and Socialist economic policies would want.
The Keynesian Free Market
My understanding of the Keynesian Free Market is that the market is free to produce and distribute products as they see fit as long as they are also willing to pay a substantial price for the “Freedom”. At the core of Keynesian Economics is the idea of affecting social change through economic intervention, similar to the Socialist Economics but without the full step of the Government actually owning the means of production. Frankly, I believe we still live in the Keynesian Free Market today. You might question why I believe this, I would direct you to things such as “Sin Taxes”. Granted, tobaco companies are free to procduce and distribute their products but only if they are willing to be taxed at a higher rate for supposedly encouraging the consumer to engage in “immoral” unhealthy behavior. This essentially takes the freedom away from the consumer and puts it in the trust of the Federal Government. The assumption is that the Federal Government has your best interest in mind, which they made indeed. Furthermore, the Keynesian philosophy of interventionism distorts the Free Market by thinking itself better equiped to choose the winners and losers than the consumer would be. An odd thought to be sure.
The Socialist Market
My understanding of the Socialist Market is that the Government controls not only the means of production but also the price and distribution of products. I also understand that the goal of the Socialist is a return to the barter system, this fails quickly and hence you end up with that of the first sentence. As well as the Keynesian Market the Socialist Markets want is to affect social change, not by subtle intervention but rather in overt totalitarianism, price controls, and taxes not seen in this country since its creation. The taxes taken are to be “fairly” distributed among the people. I put fairly in quotes because I do not believe it to be the proper term, instead of fairness I believe they mean equally, for it cannot be considered fair to take the fruits of one mans labor and give it to another for no labor at all.
So now that I have defined my views and understanding of these three basic economic concepts how exactly does it affect Self Governance? Self Governance is the idea that Man has no master on this earth, and therefore, have free will to do as we see fit, as long as our actions do not interfere with that same free will of others. So the Free Market would be assumed to further the goal of Self Governance by not interfering with the free will of the consumer. The Keynesian Market would still allow limited Self Governance, but that is not the goal and the Keynesian Market also tends to be a slow road to the Socialist Market. The Keynesian model assumes that the consumer does not know what is best for them, a sad assumption indeed. I don’t think I even need to address the affects of the Socialist market on Self Governance, because we all know that Socialism discounts the free will of the consumer and further the citizen in general and typically leads to totalitarianism.
Well there you have it….I am not sure whether this makes any sense or not…but isn’t that why I have all of you out there? Please discuss and tell me what you think.