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Wednesday, July 17, 2013

'There are Some Things You Don’t Want to Leave Up to the Market'

Paul Krugman:

John Galt and the Theory of the Firm: ...Why should any large firm exist? ... We may live in a market sea, but that sea is dotted with many islands that we call firms, some of them quite large, within which decisions are made not via markets but via hierarchy — even, you might say, via central planning. Clearly, there are some things you don’t want to leave up to the market — the market itself is telling us that, by creating those islands of planning and hierarchy. ...
The thing is, however, that for a free-market true believer the recognition that some things are best not left up to markets should be a disturbing notion. If the limitations of markets in providing certain kinds of shared services are important enough to justify the creation of command-and-control entities with hundreds of thousands or even millions of workers, might there not even be some goods and services (*cough* health care *cough*) best provided by non-market means even at the level of the economy as a whole? ...

    Posted by on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 at 01:11 AM in Economics | Permalink  Comments (123)


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