Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
But I find the identification of socialist policies (let's call them by their true name) with protectionism bizarre.

One of the key points made by Polanyi in questioning market fundamentalism, was the protectionism is natural, while lazziez faire is planned.  Which is to say the lazziez faire can only occur under a set of conditions where things like the limited liability company, strong contract law, and stable property rights exist.

So lazziez faire requires state intervention in order to exist.  Can you imagine the cost if the limited liability insurance provided by governments to publically owned companies had to underwritten by private insurers?  Or would they even be able to find an insurer willing to take that risk at any cost?

Remember that socialism and protectionism come from much the same place, social self defense against the tendency of the market to break all things down to matters of maxmizing utility regardless of the human cost.  

It's the triumph of the formal over the substantive (Weber), so that unmitigated capitalism falls prey to sacrifice the human aspect of life in pursuit of ideological goals.  

And I'll give my consent to any government that does not deny a man a living wage-Billy Bragg

by ManfromMiddletown (manfrommiddletown at lycos dot com) on Tue Jul 17th, 2007 at 02:49:09 PM EST
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