Sunday, September 30, 2007

New Day Same Crap

When are we going to wake up? And when are we going to stop genuflecting at the altar of the free market?

As an Economics major, I get the power of free markets. But we don't live in an Economics 101 world. You know, the world is slightly more complicated than that. And there's a reason why we have classes beyong Economics 101. In a better world, the crap the conservatives have been shoveling us for the past 30+ years about markets being able to police themselves would be ridiculed.

First, there is the disclosure that another company lost sensitive financial information about its customers:


One of the basic assumptions behind introductory Economics theory is that people have perfect information. Unfortunately, that is not the case. If we knew exactly how all companies were handling our sensitive information, sure, we could punish companies that were doing it improperly. And yes, this may put pressure of companies through their bottom line. And the market would police itself to ensure sensitive information was reasonably protected. However, no one knows this information. We only find out when it is lost, at which time there is little we can do to protect ourselves. We can punish the company after the fact. And maybe some other companies will notice. But that is an indirect market correction, not the direct correction all the conservatives tell us are happening.

Then, there is this:


Once again we have health risk will our food industry. My God, have we really regressed to Upton Sinclair times? And again it is the lack of information that is the problem. We as consumers do not find out until it is too late. And sure we can punish the company after the fact and we should. But that's after the damage has been done.

I can't believe I have to argue this in the year 2007 but these consistent problem exhibit why we need more governmental oversight and not less. For I may eventually be able to track down all the necessary info ahead of time, but I will not have time to do anything else. And all that point I would be overlooking mine safety or our infrastructure or something else. We need to have our government regulate industry. In the last 30 years we have moved towards less regulation and we have seen what it has gotten us. In the richest country in history we can't even protect sensitive information or be assured our products and foods won't kill us. It's a travesty and there should be mass outrage. We can and we must do better.


*politics*liberal *conservative*Democrat*Republican*Economics*government *government*poison *E Coli *Gap *data


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