Monday, November 28, 2011

Jeffrey Sachs gets one (mostly) right

A recent Wall Street Journal article by Arthur C. Brooks on the Occupy Movement and fairness ("Fairness and the 'Occupy' Movement, November 25) says some interesting things about potential common ground between free-market ideas and the Occupy movement. Yet Brooks also commits some very important errors. Perhaps with clearer facts there could be more common ground on reforming the economy and politics.
Read the rest in The Huffington Post
Fairness and the Occupy Movement Revisited
by Jeffrey Sachs

The problem "bringing both sides together" with Sachs proposals is that his post underlines the differences between OWS and the 99% movement and the Tea Party.
Today's free-marketers are different. They downplay the suffering of the poor and the extent of inequality. They deny the science of climate change. They stand by as the public infrastructure collapses. They disdain the hallowed tradition of federal support for science and education.
They subscribe instead to the ugly philosophy of Ayn Rand, who preached that there is no such thing as society or social responsibility, only a collection of individuals. Rand's philosophy is a tribute to greed, hate, and ruthlessness. Smith, Hayek, and Friedman would have been aghast. So are most Americans.
That's heresy on the far right.

But it is nice to see neoliberals like Sachs in the corner of the left on the side of"fairness and justice" instead of on the side of  "freedom for just us."

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