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Old 12-03-2010, 07:08 PM
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Default Public Choice Theory

For those of you who don't know what this means, it's basically the idea that public officials who set economic policies and regulations act in their own self-interest just like the firms they regulate. This implies their predictability in economics, just like we can predict moves of companies in economics.

So what I'm asking here is do you think all or most politicians/policy makers/government officials act in their own self-interest? They obviously have to to some extent, but are all of them simply predictable? I'd say no, but it's gotten to the point where lobbyists nearly run the corporate regulation world. The idea here is that the government undergoes "government failure" in which it becomes literally the "tool" of rent-seeking firms to maximize profits and decrease consumer welfare/efficiency. Do you think this is incredibly widespread? I do. What measures corrective measures, if any, should be taken for the future? Should government take a minimalistic approach to the economy, or should it keep all regulatory powers it has now?
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Old 12-03-2010, 07:31 PM
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One of the best things that the government can do for the economy is to lie about it. Strange as it may sound, the economy is based upon our own perceptions. If people think the markets are going down, then they are going down whether they are declining in real terms or not. We kind of expect it from our leaders today. During the oil crisis in the 70s, President Jimmy Carter tried to be realistic about the economy and it did not go well for him in regards to the public.

The bottom line is that corporations act in their own material self-inerest. They are not out to provide for you but get your money. It is hoped that by acting in their own self-interest, individuals will benefit everyone; however, this is not always the case. We need a government regulating the economy for when those self-interests clash with the common good.

Now what doesn't always act in material self-interest is people. So no, Politicians are not completely predictable by economics.

Last edited by Banefull; 12-03-2010 at 07:33 PM.
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Old 12-03-2010, 10:36 PM
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As for the second question, basically laissez faire economics vs keynesian economics? I'd definitely say we need keynesian economics, judging by the fact that laissez faire is what got us in this situation in the first place. It's why the US has been declining since the 1980s, when Reagan basically gutted all the protections and regulations of the economy, media, and government that allowed the US to boom after WWII. In a world where so few control so much, Adam Smith's self-regulating "invisible hand" breaks down. Maybe it might have worked back when everything was small business, but not when so much economic power is concentrated in only a few corporations.

As for government reforms, my post in "Empty Speech Game" outlines it pretty well.
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Old 12-03-2010, 10:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Banefull View Post
One of the best things that the government can do for the economy is to lie about it. Strange as it may sound, the economy is based upon our own perceptions. If people think the markets are going down, then they are going down whether they are declining in real terms or not. We kind of expect it from our leaders today. During the oil crisis in the 70s, President Jimmy Carter tried to be realistic about the economy and it did not go well for him in regards to the public.

The bottom line is that corporations act in their own material self-inerest. They are not out to provide for you but get your money. It is hoped that by acting in their own self-interest, individuals will benefit everyone; however, this is not always the case. We need a government regulating the economy for when those self-interests clash with the common good.

Now what doesn't always act in material self-interest is people. So no, Politicians are not completely predictable by economics.
I completely agree. Carter tried to be realistic followed by Reagan who deregulated the banks among other things...and now we're seeing the result, ironically he was well supported :/ I agree that large corporations act in their own self-interest, small business: not necessarily true (I'm sure that's what you meant by "corporations".)
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Old 12-04-2010, 01:29 AM
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Everyone does, otherwise they wouldn't seek power in the first place.
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Old 12-04-2010, 08:12 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tsyal Makto View Post
As for the second question, basically laissez faire economics vs keynesian economics? I'd definitely say we need keynesian economics, judging by the fact that laissez faire is what got us in this situation in the first place. It's why the US has been declining since the 1980s, when Reagan basically gutted all the protections and regulations of the economy, media, and government that allowed the US to boom after WWII. In a world where so few control so much, Adam Smith's self-regulating "invisible hand" breaks down. Maybe it might have worked back when everything was small business, but not when so much economic power is concentrated in only a few corporations.

As for government reforms, my post in "Empty Speech Game" outlines it pretty well.
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Everyone does, otherwise they wouldn't seek power in the first place.
Agreed
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  #7  
Old 12-11-2010, 12:09 AM
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There might be a few who thought that if they had power they could do some good with it. But that they sought it so hard shows that they also have selfish reasons. Sometimes it's hard to stay uncorrupted.
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