The Economist posted an interesting article defending free-market capitalism. What surprised me about this article is how unusually defensive, clear and one-sided its perspective is. While I agree in principle with the premise that what we need is “not bigger government, but better government”, I think the author mistakes the movement in general towards greater regulation and government oversight. No one wants a communist government nor to refute capitalism (other than for fringe idealists who don’t understand economics), nor, for that matter, to overly constrain the market economy. We simply want government to do what it is supposed to do—formulate responsible policies and regulations—rather than sit idly by and allow the market to run wanton (and destroy the environment in the process).
Part of this is making government policy and electoral processes more transparent and efficient, which entails utilizing internet and software technology. That means streamlining government, not adding to its bureaucracy. I don’t think that the way to the future lies in more overtly “Great Society” type of programs, but rather in simply attempting to bring the government back up into the present age, to keep up with businesses and civil society.
I would like to say much more on this timely and interesting topic, but I have to dash out the door to work right now. Talk amongst yourselves.