Good info on gov. regulation and the free market

Discussion in 'Politics' started by Noxnoctum, Nov 26, 2011.

  1. Alright so I had a long conversation with my dad about RP. He likes RP on many things but his main objection is that if corporations are totally unregulated by the federal government that we'll return to some sort of nightmare world ruled by corporations who do whatever they want. I tried to point out no one would be able to pollute someone else's land thanks to private property rights etc. and how the "fox is already guarding the hen house" right now in regards to regulation thanks to lobbying and the revolving door in a lot of these government agencies.

    Anyways he's still not completely convinced on the idea of regulation by the free market but said to send him more info so I thought I'd ask here for some good stuff since I'm still a newb ;).
  2. [ame=]Anti-Trust and Monopoly (with Ron Paul) - YouTube[/ame]
  3. You can find anything on the internet to support your point of view.

    Your dad has a lot of common sense. There's a reason why we have business regulations in the first place. Simple anti-fraud and private property laws don't even come close to defining the complexity of our economy and infrastructure. Most regulations are built upon those constitutional foundations anyway, they are just more narrowly defined to pertain to specific industries.

    That's not to say that government doesn't abuse their power, but so will corporations. The difference is that we can vote out our government.
  4. #4 Noxnoctum, Nov 26, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 26, 2011
    Well that's the thing. On the internet there's huge amounts of info and anyone can put something up. So I was mostly looking for real world examples. History in other words, more than theory.

    To me the argument that corporations are in essence using government to protect their monopolies and act in ways that are harmful to the consumer and general population since they're being propped up makes sense, but I'd really like to see some real examples where a completely free market is better than the current system of government basically "sponsoring" certain corporations. Because from my understanding of it, in a free market you would be "voting" with your wallet essentially, which may be more effective to get your views across than voting right now for paid off politicians.

    Or maybe we're just toast either way.

    Anyways, like I said, historical examples would be great. I'm not familiar enough with economic history to know.

  5. Yes, there are abuses of power. But I think that's more of a problem with lobbying then it is with regulations themselves.

    I think there are certainly areas where a free market can thrive. A successful local farmers market, for example. I understand there are agricultural and EPA regulations at play because agriculture is big business, however you will find much more freedom within micro-economies then you will with trade that happens on a massive international level. Those micro-economies can be very successful with little to no government intervention. A tomato is a tomato, and if a tomato looks rotten, you don't buy it. But as business and trade grows, and those tomatoes turn into dehydrated tomato concentrate grown from genetically modified seed, and preserved with a range of chemical preservatives, there becomes a greater need for defining boundaries.
  6. But isn't corruption and lobbying inevitable when you have a government and country as large as ours? I mean, it seems pretty much impossible that politicians will not be influenced by corporations to enact laws in their favor when there's so much money and power involved.

    Whereas if you take out the "middleman" and vote directly with your wallet it seems that there's less potential for abuse. Because corporations after all want what's in your wallet ;).
  7. the power to regulate is always auctioned to the highest bidder.

    Without power to corrupt, you actually have to be competitive within an industry to maintain top dog status.

    Boycotts are a powerful tool, now moreso then ever thanks to the information age. Vote with your wallets.

    Govt often uses ironic terminology; patriot act, antitrust, patient protection and affordiability, brady handgun violence prevention, cybersecurity, recovery and reinvestment, assault weapons ban, no fly zone, etc.

    Beware of the newspeak...
  8. #8 Arteezy, Nov 26, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 26, 2011
    States could still regulate corporations under a strictly constitutional government. Without government regulation, corporations wouldn't be able to get special privileges through the state; therefore, they would only 'rule' while they put out a better product than the competition. Rule is in quotes because corporations, by definition, can't rule. Governments (by definition) rule.

    [ame=]Evil Monopolies Are Fairy Tales In Free Markets - YouTube[/ame]

    I would also point out that the nightmare world he thinks will exist in a free society is actually what exists now. All corporations have to do in order "to do whatever they want" is to use the state's legislative process.

    Ludwig von Mises Institute is a good resource.

  9. The problem with this, however, is that it takes the onus off of businesses, and put it squarely into the hands of the consumer. Yet the consumer simply does not have the resources to compete with a business on this level.

    I completely understand how this is equated this with more freedom, and there ARE cases where this does mean more freedom for the consumer. But it still ignores the complexity of trade and our infrastructure, and in many ways it means the consumer is sacrificing freedom. You lose the freedom to walk into a store with a reasonable expectation that the product you buy will be safe and will function as it is supposed to. I think this is something many of you completely take for granted.

    In a micro-economy, you have the ability to look at the producer, look at his/her products, and make a reasonable decision to support that business or not. And you absolutely have the choice to support the micro-economies within your locality. A completely free market, with zero regulations, would simply bring us back to these small, simplistic economies and products.

    But let's say you want to buy a computer. You're buying a computer where the plastic is made by one company, the wires are made by another, the chips are made by yet another company, the technology was developed by someone else, and so on. There are probably at least a hundred different companies that go into producing that one product.

    Let's be honest, how many of us have the time, the desire, or the resources to investigate and make an informed choice about each and every one of those companies that went into the making of that computer? Now think about every other product you purchase on a daily basis, how those products are created, and how many "hands" are in the creation of those products. Be honest here... how many of you research your purchases to this degree?

    Without any regulations, YOU are the one responsible if something goes wrong, because the onus is on you the consumer to prove what part went wrong, what part was responsible, which company was responsible, and then you hire a lawyer and build your case. There's no regulation that state you can return a that computer within a reasonable time. There are NO regulations that protect you as a consumer. Eventually, maybe, that company will go out of business because the word gets out that they produce a bad product, but how many people get fucked over in the process?

    How about the petroleum industry? How, in modern society, could any person reasonably boycott the petroleum industry? Petroleum is used for making everything from your computers, to the food you eat, to the wood your home is built with, and everything inside of your home.

    What about the food you eat? Sure, no one will buy a rotten tomato, but what about when Company X develops a new preservative and adds it to your food untested, because there's nothing requiring them to test their ingredients, and testing costs money. What if a simple, FDA required test is all that it would take to prove that over 10-15 years of regularly ingesting it, that preservative can cause cancer. How many people would have to develop cancer before it's discovered that preservative is harmful? And if you develop cancer, the burden of proof is on YOU to prove that you were defrauded in some way. That's a hard burden of proof to meet, considering that you freely bought that product, and there was nothing stopping you from conducting your own tests before you decided to eat it. It was YOUR choice. If someone defrauds you, then that's your fault, because nothing forced you to buy that product in the first place.

    What about our energy grid? Do you think nuclear power plants, for example, should be completely unregulated? What about the power lines that individual merchant plants feed into? When you have dozens of separate, private entities feeding into a shared power line, WHO determines when and how that power is divided to create a grid that is stable for consumers? How does our the stability of our grid affect every other business in this country?

    In a completely free market, demand dictates supply. Yet we are a very rural country, where the demand for energy is naturally going to be concentrated within cities and more populous areas. So what incentive is there for a completely free market energy company to build power lines that will service a rural town? Do you think you would have more freedom if your only choice was to either live in a city with power, or a rural area without any electricity? Farms tend to be located in those rural areas. How would those farms continue to produce food without stable electricity?

    If farms are unable to get the energy they need because the rural demand for energy is too low, how would the people in our cities get the food they need to survive?

  10. the difference is our vote doesn't matter to the government, but if you stop spending money corporations will take notice. corporations cannot force you use their services, government can
  11. There are these things called warranties, many computer manufacturers offer them, those that dont should be viewed with suspicion.

    I dont know what youre getting at w/ petroleum, are they going to jack up prices or make dirty(ier) fuel? If it clogs up the engine, people buy fuel from another gas comp. If they raise prices artificially, consumer spending goes down, people drive less. Companies have the incentive to give the best price to bring in more customers, gas wars between competitors is not unheard of in our history.

    FDA is already Monsanto's bitch, again the power to regulate goes 2 the highest bidder. Perhaps without govt monopoly status, these local producers u speak fondly of could be competitive with big agra, after all, govt gives big agra its power, bought and paid for, makes operating costs over the top for organic producers, thus why organic foods cost what they do today.

    People like to support local if its affordable, without govt monopoly big agra actually has to give you a good product to retain its top dog status.

    You actually make a point for free markets, there is rural demand, and lots of it. Farms and rural communities will be courted, ever increasing population, firms will make the investment. You think factory farms are just going to go without power? There is deff money to be made in rural areas. You dont see tv programming not being offered to rural areas, satelite companies have found an affordable method to bring 1000 plus channels to bumfuck egypt.

    If the power grid is left to maintenance of energy firms, they have a profit motive to keep the grid up to date and maximize efficiency. competitive energy rates from different firms, but all have a vested interest in maintaining a structurally sound grid. You have your customers, they have theirs. Grid goes down, every company loses. All companies invest in grid maintenance, a voluntary consensus on this can be reached by all firms involved, think pro sports. If there is a lockout, everyone loses. Contracts entered into voluntarily are good.

    The status quo has failed us, more regulations sold to the highest bidder doesnt help the consumer, only the monopoly.

  12. Warranties are a scam. Let's be honest... Of all the products you've bought in your lifetime many times have you ever actually cashed in on a warranty?

    Petroleum isn't just fuel and gas. Nearly everything you own in your home, including a large percentage of the food in your cupboard is derived from petroleum. Food preservatives, furniture, computers, wood, insulation, carpets, plastic containers, product labels, boxes, clothing, shoes, personal care products, etc. are ALL derived from petroleum.

    Organic foods are regulated by the USDA.

    Like I've already acknowledged, there are some advantages to a free market. Local farmers markets are about as free of a market as you can get in this country. When was the last time you went to a farmers market?

    What determines what is a "good product" in the food industry? Is a good product one that tastes good? Is it one that is cheap? What if those products taste good and are affordable now, but can cost you your life in the long run? How will you ever know until you are dying from their product?

    You clearly do not understand how a stable energy grid is operated.

    Comparing energy lines vs. satellite is comparing apples to oranges.

    I agree. But the solution isn't to throw out the government and regulations. The solution is for us to stop supporting those huge corporations that have our government in their pocket. There is nothing stopping you from boycotting those companies now and speaking with your wallet. The question is, are you willing to make that sacrifice?
  13. How can you boycott a monopoly when they have made it too expensive for competitors to compete through regulators...

    Trying more of the same wont get you anywhere, there will always be big business so long as regulations exist, as they are always bought and paid for.
    Prohibition doesnt work, only consolidates power further into the hands of a few. Get money out of politics is more command and control prohibition bullshit that will blow up in the peoples' face.

    Again, you assume things. Warranties are voluntary, people dont buy them because the product is generally a good one, and people are lazy. Not my fault if someone is too stupid to buy a warranty. User reviews can be insightful too, thank you information age.

    No point made on petroleum either. If a company uses shitty material to make a product, you buy from the company that makes things better. Petrolium wont go to shit without the government, nobody is going to buy it if the company gives you a bad product, if everyone sells a bad product someone will make a fortune by giving the people what they actually want.

    Your fear about food is overblown, food isnt addictive (to most), but it is a necessity. Why poison your customers? It actually benefits a company to disclose its procedures to the public, if company a is transparent in how it produces food, that is a win win. Dont buy food from them, they wont disclose how your food is made, but we will tell ya everything you want to know...

    More customers, better public relations.

    I never claimed to know how an energy grid works, so spare me the smugness. There is simply too much money at stake for rural areas to be abandoned by power companies. Don't underestimate innovation.

  14. uhh yes it is. the huge companies that have government in their pocket have all the customers they need. can you boycott haliburton? they don't sell you anything, they don't need to. try boycotting the power companies, they won't give you a building permit unless you use their services, same with gas, same with water. you cannot build a house with out their services. it is akin to the mob forcing bars to use their laundry service, their glassware supplier, their liquor supplier, etc. you cannot boycott the companies that matter with government in the way, the state will not let you.
  15. #15 Penelope420, Nov 26, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 26, 2011
    What came first... Warranties, or regulations requiring them? I'll give you two guesses.

  16. Our current system has been nothing but a mess.

    How Not To 'Privatize' the Power Grid
  17. Oh dear, without the state how are warranties going to be enforced?!

    If a company doesnt recognize its own warranty, word gets out, people dont buy from them anymore. Other company steps in with better customer service, takes the other company's market share.

    Consumers are smarter then you think, and bureacrats are overrated.
  18. A warranty is not worth the paper it is written on without the statutory and case laws that define them. Warranties never existed without these laws in the first place. This is exactly what I mean when I say you take our system entirely for granted by expecting these same protections to exist without any regulatory force.

    You think warranties are a good thing unless they are enforced by the government, yet all warranties are enforced by the government. I think this is the definition of circular logic.

    If we're talking about a $200 television set, without a warranty some people might get fucked over, tell their friends on the internet and that business goes out of business, and people are only out $200.

    But let's say you buy a $50,000 copier machine for your office and you buy it with a "warranty". Your copier breaks down 2 months after you purchase it, and the company you bought it from refuses to acknowledge their warranty. Are you just going to "tell your friends" and accept that you're out $50K? No, you will take them to court. Yet, without any statutory or case law for the judge to draw from, your "contract" is worthless in a court of law.

    The onus is entirely on you to prove that the company that sold you that copier broke a law that doesn't even exist in the first place. So that company might go out of business. Is that going to give you your $50K back?

    Caveat Emptor.
  19. Except that contract enforcement is one of the few legitimate roles of government. Property rights, contract enforcement, and protection from fraud are the few powers delegated to gov in our constitution.

    My argument is that you dont need a government to force a company to offer a warranty for their product, it is good for business to voluntarily offer them.

    If a company doesnt hold up their end, it is fraud and breach of contract, any half assed lawyer can make the case. You dont exactly want it to be public knowledge that your company is being sued left and right for backing out on a warranty.

    Voluntary contracts are better then a contract you are forced into.

    Warranties can exist without regulators demanding a company offer them, it is in the company's best interest to offer them. Without a warranty, nobody is going to give them 50,000 dollars in the first place.
  20. Exactly! :hello:

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