I thought I’d write a bit about my views regarding society and the market.
I’m all about expanding both social and economic freedom by expanding choice and expanding opportunities. I view them as one and the same. Limiting economic freedom limits choice, and therefore social freedom. Limiting social freedom I argue limits economic freedom. Limiting both limits what choices you can make, and therefore opportunity. For me, limiting either when it brings no harm to others is wrong, especially under the pretense of morality, which is often the case with the likes of socialists and conservatives.
Regulations should only exist for ensuring immediate public safety and wellbeing from external threats, be it short term (workplace safety, EI) or long term (global warming, CPP). Government spending should focus on expanding opportunities first and foremost, which is why I am anal about public education and having more publicly funded R&D.
Anyway, I just feel that society and the market is the same thing at the end of the day, and that meddling with either affects both.
I mean, ban abortions and you put abortionists out of business. Ban gay marriage, and as a result, insurance companies cannot sell joint insurance plans to an entire segment of the population. Ban marijuana, and it becomes illegal to excercise your economic freedom to grow and sell the Mary Jane. As seen here, regulations on society and social mores reduce overall consumer spending, and as a result, the GDP.
Limiting economic freedom, through regulation like outright banning the sale of say, guns, would serve only to stomp all over rural society’s social mores. Things like our government-sanctioned wheat and milk cartels (obvious meddling and price fixing in the market sanctioned by the government) only drive up prices, resulting in poverty stricken families often resorting to drinking pop instead of milk, which is a discernible negative effect on society.
Ultimately, the market and society are one and the same. Placing limitations on either serves to limit both. As a result, we should be mindful of this reality, and as Liberals, use this as a point of differentiation from both the NDP (meddling with the market) and the Conservatives (meddling with social mores).
Yeah, I’m big on the whole “freedom” thing.