Monday, January 18, 2016

Economic Freedom, in Public and Private Context

Are societies more free, when organizational capacity is geared towards private settings? This matters in part because public and private delineations for economic vitality, are not as clear cut as they might seem. Rationalizing that something "should" be designated private, to maintain freedom of choice and personal action for as many as possible, assumes that organizational capacity automatically strives to make it so. We reason that private enterprise is ultimately responsible for economic growth and vitality, because it is.

In reality, economies slowly break down, when private interests choose personal gain over the growth creating conditions of marketplace inclusion. Further, when private enterprise chooses personal gain over economic vitality, this occurs with government "blessings" at a basic structural level. As personal and social freedoms are lost, the process takes place in ways that are often not easy to recognize.

Why are these structural and supply side circumstance not better understood? Instead of seeking more freedom for production and consumption options, political interests align to procure more of the proceeds of an artificially restricted marketplace. In other words, political parties clamor for a bigger portion of a pie; one which they have already played a role in making smaller to benefit their own members. How to create new marketplace growth, instead, which includes greater means for economic freedom?

It wasn't always this way, and the constitutions of today's nations were often written when individuals had more freedom, to produce and consume what they sought in the marketplace. Those earlier freedoms tended to make clamors for "living wages" unnecessary, for wages and income went further when individuals could define and create product through their own means.

Slowly but surely, restrictions in the definitions of production and consumption, led to less freedom and economic opportunity. The Great Recession should have been a major indicator that something was wrong in this regard, but policy makers and economists alike proceeded as though little needed to be addressed - either in terms of economic theory or organizational capacity.

Even though the details of cronyism have begun to make their way into public dialogue, these discussions have yet to offer any structural remedies. Cronyism becomes possible when too many individuals assume that someone else is always willing to look out for the public interest - even if the public isn't really concerned about the particulars. But how can anyone - public or private - be expected to remain conscientious about resource management, if no one is paying attention? Hence the ways in which groups agree to coordinate and account for resource capacity, need to be better understood by all concerned. In order to rethink production and consumption priorities, economic time value also needs to be at the center of the process.

Fortunately, a greater degree of freedom remains, in terms of the production and consumption of tradable goods. Indeed, a college degree is not always necessary in these sectors, in order for individuals to gain active and leading roles. The greatest problems for economic and social freedom, are in the rigid requirements of the non tradable sectors, both in terms of asset and services formation. Indeed, public or private status designations do not presently get at the root of the problem, which is a lack of time based services product - in both production and consumption terms. If economic freedom is to be regained, reclaiming time value would be one of the first steps taken on this hopeful path.

No comments:

Post a Comment