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Sustainable Management Futures. Free Markets and Governments - Essay Example

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Sustainable Management Futures Business University 1.1 FREE MARKETS AND GOVERNMENTS: The Free market is a Lockesian construct, access to which is considered an inalienable right in a democracy. It is an arrangement of buyers and suppliers where prices are determined by demand and supply and not an extraneous factor such as the government…
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Download file to see previous pages Some scholars go to the extent that the government shouldn’t even engage in public spending on health, education and other necessities. ( Reisman, J., 1998) With such a non-egalitarian orientation, the government’s role in a free market system is confined to the role of a spectator while the market ensures that the efficient businessmen are rewarded with profits. -THE SOCIAL COSTS OF THE INVISIBLE HAND Classical economists such as Adam Smith claim that a free market is bound to create growth, that the invisible hand in an unregulated market fosters growth of efficient market mechanisms. Even after almost three centuries having passed by after the evolution of this notion, the free market is still deemed as an ideal model, but its promised benefits to society are now being viewed as rather utopian in nature. The dynamics of an unregulated free market are seen as quite reminiscent of Social Darwinism. The market favors the efficient few who own the means of production. ( Stiglitz, J., 2011) The free market functions in such a way that formation of separate classes is inevitable. Much attention has been paid to the rise of the industrial bourgeoisie and the proletariat. The former owning the means of production and making profits, while the former providing labor and earning wages. While the free market is said to have provided opportunities for both, the sheer magnitude of the unequal share of rewards has raised skepticism to the social benefits of a free market. -FREE MARKETS IN THE CONTEMPORARY WORLD The recent global economic crisis is said to have been the result of unregulated free markets. The role of governments is now being brought into perspective again, as the government is the very entity that is assisting in stabilizing the markets with massive bailout packages. The enormous growth rates exhibited during the pre-recession period were phenomenal, but a retrospective analysis suggests that they were unsustainable. The major fuel for recent economic growth has been the availability of capital. Lenient credit policies have paved way for expanding markets but not much attention has been paid to the costs of such confidence based growth. The common man, encouraged by growth-driven corporations has increased consumption, with the assumption that incomes will rise simultaneously. This spiral might exist for a limited time, but when it stops, the market eventually collapses. Unregulated economic growth has led to the resurfacing of a plethora of subprime lending and major Ponzi schemes. (Stiglitz, J.,2011 ) Economic growth does in fact lead to improving social indicators. Ever since capitalism has become the popular form of economic governance around the world, per capita inflation-adjusted income has risen from $5,400 in 1980 to $8,500 in 2005. (Shleifer, A., 2009) While educational and health figures have improved, the north-south orientation of this growth has been noticed as well. While social indicators have improved in some areas and strata of the population, other portions remain unaffected. For instance, the top 1% of the income earners in United States have 24% share in the overall incomes generated. (Timothy, N. 2010) -THE NEED OF A MEDIATOR- THE GOVERNMENT: The concept of a welfare state arises from the notion that the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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