Why do so many LIBERALS simply do not get it regarding the free market

Jump to Last Post 1-6 of 6 discussions (41 posts)
  1. gmwilliams profile image84
    gmwilliamsposted 10 years ago

    enterprise- capitalist system while many CONSERVATIVES do?

    1. Quilligrapher profile image73
      Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Hi there, Ms. Williams. It is possible that your one sided OP statement proves that it is conservatives that do not fully “get it.”

      It has often been said that both liberals and conservatives promote the free market enterprise-capitalist system. However, liberals are better at remembering our history, a history too many conservatives would like to forget.

      Liberals have learned through the years that industries need regulation and oversight. While Conservatives cling to textbook theories and hypothetical examples to extol the virtues of little or no regulation of commercial activities, progressives recall real life incidents like the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911.

      Due to the lack of adequate regulations, exit doors were locked and some stairwells were used for storage. It is now obvious that these conditions were in place for a long period of time specifically BECAUSE this negligence served only the interests of enterprises like Triangle Shirtwaist. Within 30 minutes, 145 people perished in the blaze or jumped to their deaths from nine floors above the street. {1}
      America has learn that an unregulated “free market” does not punish corporate collusion and price fixing, two practices remarkably successful for increasing profits at the expense of customers. America has not forgotten that an unregulated “free market” did not penalize the Tobacco Institute, an industry wide lobby formed to push back against regulations to protect consumers. America knows that an unregulated “free market” does not discourage business acquisitions in which corporate giants devoured smaller companies for the purpose of eliminating, not stimulating, competition. In short, America knows corporations in an unregulated free-market environment can not be relied on to operate in the best interest of society and the consumer.       

      Is it true that only one viewpoint really “gets it” while the other does not? Or rather, have we learned that only the moderates from all viewpoints are best suited to man the helm of state?
      {1} http://law2.umkc.edu/faculty/projects/f … count.html

      1. Disappearinghead profile image60
        Disappearingheadposted 10 years agoin reply to this


      2. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
        Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Anyone who tells you that a free market would lead to collusion and price fixing is obviously not an economist, and has never studied Game Theory. Take their "expertise" with a grain of salt. The only way collusion and price fixing could possibly work is in a regulated market with built in loopholes that would allow it to happen, not in a free market.

        The Tobacco Institute had absolutely nothing to do with a free market or economic policy. As it turns out, the market did punish the Tobacco Industry, tobacco consumption has been in a steady and rapid decline since the late 60s.

        Anyone who tells you that corporations "devouring" small companies hurts competition is, again, obviously not an economist. Large firms buying up smaller companies only servers to create more competition, since there is an inevitable explosion of smaller companies looking to get bought up. Buying out a smaller company eliminates a competitor, not competition.

        I don't know who's telling you this stuff, but if they ever offer you a glass of Kool-Aid, whatever you do, don't drink it. In a free market society, taking care of your customers is the only way to survive. In a free market, competition between companies polices itself, nearly always to the benefit of the consumer.

        "The market will reward the wise, slap the greedy, and destroy the foolish"

        1. GA Anderson profile image90
          GA Andersonposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Well, there goes my perception of history. First thing I thought of was Rockefeller and Standard Oil, then crawled up the timeline to the old "Ma Bell" monopoly - but I guess I just don't understand because I'm not an economist, nor have I studied the Game Theory.

          Tell me, was there ever a true Free Market period that matches your theories? In the real world I mean.


          1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
            Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Lol, yeah, being from Florida I know all about Standard Oil. Nearly everything down here is either named "Flagler", "Osceola", or something "Beach" (ironically, we also have a lot of "Winters" down here: Winter Park, Winter Garden, Winter Springs, etc.)

            Both of those, companies were only able to grow to the level that they did by exploiting the existing regulations at the time. Had there been free market competition, they never would have been able to "game the system" so to speak.

            As for a "true Free Market period", there were times when the market was certainly more free than it is now: early English settlements, during the period after the Revolution, and again in the South after the Civil War, but there has never been a "true free market" in the U.S.

            As for the world, you generally only find free markets in third world or undeveloped countries. Most opponents of a free market will use India as their poster child, which is fair to a certain extent, but it has larger problems that contribute to the conditions there, problems outside the scope of what the market is able to correct.

        2. Quilligrapher profile image73
          Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Good evening, Mr. McIntyre. I do not think I have had the pleasure to exchange ideas with you before now. It is nice to meet you.

          Your comments have many facets and, with your permission, I will respond to each with a separate post.

          Once again, I read the “Kool-Aid” reference that has grown so popular. When used to put down someone or their opinions, I see nothing but a crude and disrespectful reference to over 900 suicide victims and a US Congressman who died at Jonestown. {1} It is certainly not a term I expect from sensitive and well-educated authorities. When applied to me, I am offended by the implication that my opinions are delusional and I am amused by the implication that the accuser’s opinions are infallible. The phrase is already trite and I hope short-lived.   

          As for my sources, you need only to follow the links I provide or ask me (more pleasantly I would hope).   

          I sincerely hope you have a pleasant night.
          {1} http://www.cnn.com/2008/US/11/12/jonestown.factsheet/

          1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
            Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            The pleasure is all mine. It's always nice to interact with well established members of any community, and I would say that, given your 4+ years at HubPages, you certainly qualify.

            And out of respect for your views, I shall respond in kind.


            First of all, let me compliment you: that was an amazing Ad Hominem. One that I nostalgically read several times in the voice of one of my old ECON professors. He was a strong Keynesian, and as such, was less than amused with my Austrian School views.

            As for the term itself, while I can certainly understand your distaste for what is seemingly a callous reference to an unspeakable tragedy, I can assure you that no such reference was intended. As the media is prone to do from time to time, they have co-opted this phrase (which admittedly does make for a more intriguing headline) from it's original intent and usage, which was the experimentation with psychedelic drugs in the late '60s. 

            Unfortunately, no such references are required. To this day Jonestown remains etched in society as one of the most tragic, and pointless, losses of human life. 

            I see that I have a few more "replies to reply to", so let me say again that it's nice to meet you, and I will get to work answering your messages.

        3. Quilligrapher profile image73
          Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Hi Mr. McIntyre. If I may continue…

          I disagree and provide evidence. The sole purpose of the Tobacco Industry was to deflect free market forces and to influence government policy and you claim it “had absolutely nothing to do with a free market or economic policy.” The Tobacco Institute was collusion across an entire industary. Its role was to deny scientific facts and to push back against market forces by lying to consumers and regulators. This ‘80’s video trumpets the many pro-tobacco activities undertaken by the group, including: lobbying politicians to prevent the passage of smoking laws, fact-checking and disputing anti-smoking statements by the Surgeon General. {1}
          {1} http://laughingsquid.com/80s-promo-vide … ade-group/

          1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
            Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Hello Again, Mr. Quilligrapher,

            While I can certainly understand your confusion, allow me the opportunity to shed some light on the issue. 

            Nearly any organization, when drawn out to its most distant logical evolution, can be deemed as attempting to effect economic change. The Tobacco Institute was an example of a broad conspiracy (not collusion) across an industry to attempt to do the following: Suppress scientific information, Deceive its customers (and the Government) as to the dangers of smoking, Lobby for regulations and policies it felt were beneficial to the Tobacco Industry, and to engage in political attacks against opponents.

            Now while there were economic repercussions, to be sure, the Tobacco Institute was not attempting to influence any larger economic policy. It was simply (albeit illegally, unethically, and immorally) attempting to advocate for those it represented.

            1. Quilligrapher profile image73
              Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Hi Mr. McIntyre.

              Your inability to see my viewpoint hardly means I am the one who is confused.

              In fact, you shed very little light and even seem to be confused when you say, “the Tobacco Institute was not attempting to influence any larger economic policy. It was simply (albeit illegally, unethically, and immorally) attempting to advocate for those it represented.” Intentionally or not, you shifted your focus away from the statements in my post.

              I did not claim the Tobacco Institute was “attempting to influence any larger economic policy,” so why bring it up? I said, the “purpose of the Tobacco Institute was to deflect free market forces and to influence government policy.” It is one of many real life examples that demonstrates why enterprises can not be relied on to act in the best interests of its own customers much less for the benefit of our society on a whole.

              I am thinking, Mr. McIntyre, we might all benefit if you fed us fewer textbook theories and more real life examples. It appears not all of the theories hold up in the real world.

        4. Quilligrapher profile image73
          Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          In time, you may learn that I take everyone’s “expertise” with a grain of salt. I cited real world examples. You criticize me for saying “an unregulated ‘free market’ does not punish corporate collusion and price fixing” but you did not provide any examples to prove that it has.

          Economic and Game Theories are not convincing when compared to real world examples of free market shortcomings. In fact, it confirms what I said. Some folks “cling to textbook theories and hypothetical examples to extol the virtues of little or no regulation of commercial activities, progressives recall real life incidents like the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire of 1911.” The legacy of the Triangle fire was regulations and oversight not to impair our free market system but to curtail extreme abuses inherent in the system itself.

          Here is another real life example of collusion and price fixing from among many…
          The New Zealand Herald (June 13, 2013) –“Air New Zealand will pay more than $8 million in penalties for its role in air cargo price fixing, offending which a High Court judge says hurt consumers and was at the "serious end of the spectrum... In his ruling yesterday Justice Geoffrey Venning said Air New Zealand's conduct in the case was "at the serious end of the spectrum" and was anti-competitive.” {1}

          I would welcome a few links to some real life, not theoretical, examples of how market forces alone prevented collusion and price fixing.

          {1} http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news … d=10890380

          1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
            Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Always a wise policy, and, having had the opportunity now to read your last couple responses, one that I find unsurprising from such an obviously learned individual.

            A free market, were it to exist, would render collusion obsolete. It would be disastrous for any group of corporations to pursue because it creates such an obvious, and potentially fatal, vulnerability. It would leave these companies completely helpless when (and I use the term "when", because the eventuality of this happening would be an economic certainty) a new competitor entered the market.

            There would be no motivation for a new competitor to participate, since they would have unprecedented control over such a large market share. The opportunity cost of not doing so would simply be too high to ignore.

            Corporate Collusion is one of the things that sounds great to a politician; it seems like a perfect example for the need for more oversight by the government. It is in fact, however, a "solution without a problem", as the most fundamental principals of business would, in a free market, make it a non-starter. 

            The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory had nothing to do with free market or economic policies, and the assertion that it did is simply not factual. It was a product of poor workplace safety and the political and social policies concerning immigrant workers at the time.

            Much like with the Tobacco Institute, you're using the broadest possible implications of the cause of the incident to try and find some deeper, underlying economic culprit.

            That would be like asking for examples of times when a speed limit sign prevented someone from speeding. All we can do is look at what we know about the free market, and what the data tells us, and draw our own conclusions.

            I would only note that, even in the case you cited, had this happened in a truly free market, a competitor would have inevitably stepped in and undercut the competition. This is always the case in a free market.

            1. Quilligrapher profile image73
              Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Hey there, Mr. McIntyre.

              It is your unsupported opinion “the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory [fire] had nothing to do with free market or economic policies.” Then in the next sentence, “It was a product of poor workplace safety.”

              Therefore, you would have us believe that poor workplace safety is some how separate and removed from the workings of a free market system. To the contrary, George Reisman, an American economist, Professor Emeritus of Economics at Pepperdine University and a staunch defender of laissez-faire capitalism tells us safety improvements are a by-product of a free market.   

              “Very importantly, a free market also serves to bring about improvements in safety even in cases in which they do not pay for themselves through improvements in efficiency, that is, even in cases in which they result in the incurrence of additional costs.” {1}

              It seems obvious that the Triangle Shirtwaist fire is evidence of a serious free market failure. Not just a tragic failure of just one enterprise, mind you, for the perilous working conditions at Triangle and unsafe manufacturing environments in general were common place at the time. According to theory, if Triangle employees could have moved to equivalent, safer workplaces then Triangle would have lost its work force and gone out of business. 

              In the end, Mr. McIntyre, the opinion that the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory [fire] “was a product of poor workplace safety” having “nothing to do with [the] free market” is contradicted by Prof. Reisman. The causes of this incident do indeed reveal a deeper underlying economic culprit. Perhaps it is the influence of human nature, or greed, or ignorance. What ever the culprit, it is another real life example that demonstrates why an enterprise can not be relied on to act in the best interests of its own employees much less for the benefit of our society as a whole.
              {1} http://mises.org/freemarket_detail.aspx?control=436

        5. Quilligrapher profile image73
          Quilligrapherposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Mr. McIntyre,

          You would have us believe “Buying out a smaller company eliminates a competitor, not competition.” However, in the real world, when the giant firms finally get around to the last competitor, buying out that smaller company eliminates both a competitor and competition in blunt and realistic contrast to your claim. 

          In addition, in his paper “ELIMINATING POTENTIAL COMPETITION: Mergers Involving Constraining and Prospective Competitors”, John Kwoka of Northeastern University discusses two versions of the Economics of Potential Competition. He specifically notes, ”The second version of this doctrine entails a firm that objectively is likely to enter the market, even if not so perceived. Its elimination by merger prevents future entry that would have led to deconcentration of the market and the strengthening of competition.” {1}

          Therefore, I submit scholars recognize that mergers and acquisitions can be used as a strategy for eliminating competition even if you do not.
          {1} http://www.economics.neu.edu/papers/doc … 05-007.pdf page 2

          1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
            Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Greetings again Mr. Quilligrapher, 

            Again, you're confusing the issues here. Buying out your competitors does not eliminate competition. In a truly free market, there is no way for any company to completely eliminate competition..

            I own a Consulting Firm, if I were to buy up every other Consulting Firm in my area, all I would have done is remove those particular competitors from the market. I would not have "eliminated competition" however, since there would be absolutely no way to prevent a new Consulting Firm from starting up, or moving into my area.

            What those who vilify corporations for buying up smaller competitors, have a tendency to ignore the fact that, the most common reason for buying a smaller competitor is for acquisition, not elimination.

            It's ironic that you would use Prof. Kwoka (whom incidentally, I've had the privilege of hearing speak on more than one occasion), for your example. One thing that he, and you, fail to recognize is that the ability to truly "eliminate competition" can only exist in a regulated environment, where existing laws and regulations can be exploited to prevent any additional entrance into the market.

            The most famous example of this phenomenon is that of the Wright Brothers{1}, who were able to exploit broad interpretations of patent law to stifle competition and essentially bring the burgeoning aircraft industry to a screeching halt.

            Believe me, I understand all of the confusion regarding the properties of a free market since it's been so long since we actually had one in this country; this is largely the result of the Western World's love of Lord Keynes.

            As Adam Smith taught us in The Wealth of Nations:

            "By pursuing his own interest he frequently promotes that of the society more effectually than when he really intends to promote it. I have never known much good done by those who affected to trade for the public good. It is an affectation, indeed, not very common among merchants, and very few words need be employed in dissuading them from it."{2}

            Although speaking on his preference for domestic, rather than foreign trade, the core principal is the same.

            Hoping that these replies have found you on a happy (and productive) Monday,
            Shawn McIntyre

            {1} http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Wright … patent_war
            {2} http://www.econlib.org/library/Smith/smWN13.html

            1. Credence2 profile image80
              Credence2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Shawn, I have been following with great interest the conversation between you and Quill. You extol the virtue of the free-market above all. You seem to indicate that in a pure free market environment the proper balance would be realized between the needs of the capitalist, consumer and the general public, without government involvement. How is that possible? Here are a couple of questions for you

              1. In my research I find that up toward 90% of the world nations (governments) have  minimum wage laws that are to be complied with by employers. Do you think that all these governments have identified a problem with the unfettered free-market and might be aware of something that the free marketeers are not?

              2. Many years ago I took a tour of Kellogs, in Battle Creek, Michigan. I was pulled aside and told that USDA is involved in inspecting lots of cereal for extraneous matter which is permitted only up to certain levels, rat hair, droppings, etc. I was told that the company was only interested in eliminating extraneous material that is obvious to the consumer only upon his inspection and use. But we all know that what you don't see can hurt you. It cost money for Kellogs, and its competitors, General Mills and Post to insure the cleanliness of their products to levels beyond what is visible to the human eye.  What about books like 'the Jungle'? Does government have a role to be proactive to prevent sickness among its citizens or do we let the free-market choice of the consumer come to play as a result of enough consumers becoming sick on the use of any one company's product? If I mentioned this to you before, let me know?

              3. Having lived in California for many years, there was a health inspection rating system. Once a restaurant is inspected, the rating A-D is given. That rating is required to be placed by the restaurant owner in a prominent place within its establishment. Having a "C" rating placard was the kiss of death for any restaurant business. You would always be checking the 'B" restaurants, wondering why it did not get an 'A' and would the shortcoming affect your confidence in wanting to eat there? From your perspective, would that be government meddling? Again, the free-market is fine in allowing the consumer the ability to go to another establishment when the food in not great and/or the establishment gives the impression of not being clean simply through direct observation. But what about food handling practices and operations outside of the immediate view of the consumer? As a capitalist, would I not be interested in keeping costs to the lower levels consistent with customer satisfaction? What you cannot see cannot hurt you, so why incur the expense? The manager may not be concerned about aspects that the customer cannot identify nor appreciate as discretionary factors in his choice of dining establishments.  Unsanitary practices result in food borne illnesses, sometimes quite severe, but not identified by the consumer as such until it is too late.

              1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
                Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                Hi Credence2, always nice to meet fellow "Hubbers". I've glanced ahead and you've asked some really great questions. Hopefully my answers will help clear up some of my positions on economic issues.

                In a free market, while there are a myriad of complex variables, the core underlying principal at the very foundation of all of it, is the law of "Supply & Demand". If left alone, and free of outside interference, markets will always reach an equilibrium where production and supply equals demand.

                No, I think that these governments have found a "no risk, high return" political issue and are exploiting it. Not many people have lost an election by making the argument that poor, and unskilled workers should make more money.

                Minimum wage laws however, do not benefit the poor, or the unskilled. What they do is increase unemployment in those categories by artificially inflating the cost of labor. As a practical example of this, I used to keep a few people on staff (usually high school kids), to take care of the lawn care for my office building. When Florida increased the minimum wage in 09, I had to let them go and hire a lawn service; four jobs lost, because of the minimum wage.

                This again is an example of the general confusion surrounding a "Free Market Society". Of course the government should be allowed oversight as to the acceptable level of "rat hair, droppings, etc." allowed in food products (which in my opinion should be 0.0%). This has nothing to do with a free market.

                Yes, it costs more to "insure the cleanliness of their products to levels beyond what is visible to the human eye", but this is just the cost of doing business. The cost, when distributed against the volume of productivity, is miniscule and will more than likely be passed along to the consumer in the end, so it makes little difference.

                As I've said before, "free market does not mean economic anarchy". It means not interfering with, or attempt to manipulate, the basic principals, and fundamental elements of a free market. 

                This again goes along with the above answer. There is no inherit conflict with the free market from the state requiring restaurants to maintain a certain level of cleanliness and to disclose that level to the public.

                Capitalism is not, as you have implied a couple times, about keeping costs as low as possible. It's about keeping profitability as high as possible, and although it may sound counter intuitive, those two are not one in the same. This is something that, as a Management Consultant, I deal with on a daily basis.

  2. SOBF profile image62
    SOBFposted 10 years ago

    I think its because liberals don't tend to fantasize about a society that is non-existent. We know that the only time this country worked under a free market model we had child labor, slavery,  and people working in life threatening conditions. Then came the government to balance unfeathered capitalism with social intervention. We understand that capitalism bought us the greatest financial disaster in our countries history by which government had to bail us out. We understand that claims of business can do it better are rarely backed up with true examples. Consider this, most of the advances made in modern society where initiated through government research or funding, not capitalism. The capitalism that drives this country consist mainly of the moving of money or producing products on the other side of the border.

    1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
      Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Which disaster was that?

  3. SOBF profile image62
    SOBFposted 10 years ago

    The crash of 1920 and the downturn of 2008.

    1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
      Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      First of all, I think you mean the crash of 1929. The crash of 1920 was unpleasant to be sure, but it was the natural result in the draw down after WWI, and hardly one of the "greatest financial disasters" in our history,

      The crash in '29 was caused by a combination of retaliatory tariffs in response to Smoot-Hawley, which caused a $3.3 Billion loss in exports, and the failure of the Fed to step in and mitigate the contraction of the currency supply. Both of which were government policies.

      The downturn in '08 was caused by the repeal of Glass-Steagall (which tore down the barriers between investment and commercial banking), and the burst of the housing bubble (which was caused by the Clinton administration's policies on subprime lending).

      1. Credence2 profile image80
        Credence2posted 10 years agoin reply to this

        We must include unfettered speculation in the markets, the buying and selling of stocks on margin on terms not possible today.

        Yes, captialism without restraint at any level is always a disaster in the making.

      2. SOBF profile image62
        SOBFposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Yes, I was making reference to the crash of 1929. Are you suggesting that even in 1929 era $3.3 Billion dollars in loss exports would have a vast affect on the economic well being of a entire nation? Was not the Feds failure to step in a method of allowing the free market to work it out on its own?  Wouldn't the repeal of Glass-Steagall count as less government intervention in the market place which created a free market. The Clinton administrations policy on subprime lending? Please share more on that point.

        1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
          Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Taken point by point, you're right, none of them were enough on their own to create the resulting disasters, but when you add them all up, they create a "perfect storm" of economic conditions that gave us the Great Depression and Great Recession.

          The loss of $3.3 Billion (around $44 Billion in today's dollars) would have been painful, no doubt: there would have been widespread layoffs which would have drastically increased unemployment, but it more than likely would have only been a recession had it been the only factor.

          If the Fed had stepped in during the bank runs, they could have "stopped the bleeding" (think of George Bailey in "It's A Wonderful Life").

          While it may appear that the repeal of Glass-Steagall resulted in a failure of the free market, I'm afraid it only appears that way since we don't actually have a free market. Unless one is advocating economic anarchy, everyone recognizes that there have to be some basic rules in place, free market or no( much like how even in a free society, we still have laws). One of those most basic laws should be that: You can be an Investment Bank or a Commercial Bank, but never both; it's a built in (and as we've seen), dangerous conflict of interests.

          As for the push for subprime lending, that's a little more in depth (I'm planning on answering this one in a new Hub), but here's the Schoolhouse Rock version: Basically, the bank loaned money to people who couldn't afford to pay it back, and then packaged and sold those loans investors. When the people inevitably started defaulting on those loans, you had the "burst" of the housing bubble which was one of the contributing factors (and some would say the catalyst) to the Great Recession.

          1. SOBF profile image62
            SOBFposted 10 years agoin reply to this

            Before writing that Hub you may want to look at the difference between subprime lenders and the reinvestment act that were two totally different things. Subprime lending was actually birthed out of the repeal of Glass-Steagall. It was a market reaction not a legislative one.

            1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
              Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

              Clinton started pushing CRA reform (which was the catalyst that kicked off the subprime lending boom) in '93, GLB didn't repeal Glass-Steagall until '99. By the time that happened, the foundation of the crisis was already laid.

              Now if you want to talk about the banking crisis that resulted from the housing bubble burst: the effect the collapsing of MBS and CDOs had on the economy, that's a fair point, both of those were compounded by the Glass-Steagall repeal.

              Incidentally, both of those will be covered in my next hub.

              1. SOBF profile image62
                SOBFposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                So your argument is that Clinton's well intended  government program that had nothing to do with subprime lending or the housing markets collapse was the problem because it allowed the "free market" to do what it does, and we don't understand?

                1. Shawn McIntyre profile image76
                  Shawn McIntyreposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                  When Clinton started pushing CRA reform, it mandated that a certain percentage of loans had to go to high risk applicants from inner city areas, applicants who the bank knew would, for a variety or reasons, have a difficult time paying those loans back... this is almost the textbook definition of subprime lending.

                  I don't see how you can call this a failure of the free market when, had it actually been a free market without Government intervention (interference in my opinion), these people never would have qualified for those loans in the first place.

                  1. innersmiff profile image66
                    innersmiffposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                    You also can't discount the role of the Federal Reserve through its manipulation of interest rates.

                  2. John Holden profile image62
                    John Holdenposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                    Actually, the bankers found a way of making money out of bad risks, until the bad risks became too big and too obvious and then we had the housing crash.

                  3. SOBF profile image62
                    SOBFposted 10 years agoin reply to this

                    I can call it a failure of the free market because CRA loans were made by neighborhood banks, not large free market institution that desired nothing more than to resale their loans on the market. CRA banks were more likely to hold and service their loans, subprime lenders sold them as fast as they could. They falsified documents in order to get as many loans on the books as possible because the more loans underwritten the more they could resale. CRA banks were totally different from subprime lenders. Subprime lenders didn't fall under CRA because they were mostly nothing more than loan underwriters not banking institutions.

  4. BigJulesMags profile image70
    BigJulesMagsposted 10 years ago

    Capitalism comes with restraint (anti-monopoly laws, campaign finance restrictions).  There is not a name for the system we currently have, other than corrupt, because PACs, bundlers, and lobbyists purchase policy that distorts the free market and tilts business in their favor.  It's called corruption, and its been the new game in town since campaign finance dollars and big corporate mass communications have determined election results.

  5. innersmiff profile image66
    innersmiffposted 10 years ago


  6. innersmiff profile image66
    innersmiffposted 10 years ago

    The best analysis of the current system I've heard in a while:

    "1. Big business and big government are (for the most part) natural allies.

    2. Although conservative politicians pretend to hate big government, and liberal politicians pretend to hate big business, most mainstream policies – both liberal and conservative – involve (slightly different versions of) massive intervention on behalf of the big-business/big-government elite at the expense of ordinary people.

    3. Liberal politicians cloak their intervention on behalf of the strong in the rhetoric of intervention on behalf of the weak; conservative politicians cloak their intervention on behalf of the strong in the rhetoric of non-intervention and free markets – but in both cases the rhetoric is belied by the reality.

    4. A genuine policy of intervention on behalf of the weak, if liberals actually tried it, wouldn’t work either, since the nature of government power would automatically warp it toward the interests of the elite.

    5. A genuine policy of non-intervention and free markets, if conservatives actually tried it, would work, since free competition would empower ordinary people at the expense of the elite.

    6. Since conservative policies, despite their associated free-market rhetoric, are mostly the diametrical opposite of free-market policies, the failures of conservative policies do not constitute an objection to (but rather, if anything, a vindication of) free-market policies."

    - Roderick Long


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://corp.maven.io/privacy-policy

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)