Contrasting Friedman and Lindblom on Economic Systems Essay

Contrasting Friedman and Lindblom on Economic Systems Essay

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The current issues that have been created by the market have trapped our political system in a never-ending cycle that has no solution but remains salient. There is constant argument as to the right way to handle the market, the appropriate regulatory measures, and what steps should be taken to protect those that fail to be competitive in the market. As the ideological spectrum splits on the issue and refuses to come to a meaningful compromise, it gets trapped in the policy cycle and in turn traps the cycle. Other issues fail to be handled as officials drag the market into every issue area and forum as a tool to direct and control the discussion. Charles Lindblom sees this as an issue that any society that allows the market to control government will face from the outset of his work.
Lindblom poses that the market entraps government because it fears the fall out of poor market function and the unemployment that it would create. The officials understand that the economy, at a basic level, is something that everyone can understand and that when it is doing poorly, they are in danger of losing their “privileged position”. According to Lindblom,
“the exercise of that authority is curbed and shaped by the concern of government officials for its possible adverse effects of business, since adverse effects can cause unemployment and other consequences that government officials are unwilling to accept. In other areas of public policy, the authority of government is again curbed and shaped by concern for possible adverse effects of business” (Lindblom page 178).
As a result, business enjoys a certain “privileged position” and is widely accepted by the American public. However, there appears to be a shift as people begin to see that busin...


... middle of paper ...


...here people abided by acceptable and fair practices in the market, these actions and oversight would not be necessary to ensure that we continue to live in a true democracy with political equality. Milton Friedman would have his pure market economy devoid of any government intervention while Lindblom’s concerns that the policy process will be endlessly trapped by arguments about the market would be eased. Democracy would truly mean political equality and allow all those that wished to participate to do so with all the information they require.



Works Cited

Friedman, Milton. Capitalism and freedom. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1962.
Lanchester, John. I.O.U.: why everyone owes everyone and no one can pay. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2010.
Lindblom, Charles Edward. Politics and markets: the world's political economic systems. New York: Basic Books, 1977.

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