[ExI] Slavery Now and in the Past

Rafal Smigrodzki rafal.smigrodzki at gmail.com
Tue Apr 15 16:25:17 UTC 2008

On Tue, Apr 15, 2008 at 10:26 AM, Kevin Freels
<kevinfreels at insightbb.com> wrote:

>  Of course the question we are really trying to answer is whether a totally
> free market will always be superior to a market that is managed and
> manipulated by government. If we were just talking about the past, then it
> would be obvious that government regulation is necessary. Without labor
> laws, people were working for pennies - or even as slaves.

### It is absolutely clear that labor laws do not increase the mean
real incomes (just leaf through an economics handbook). The prime
determinant of wages is *labor productivity*, all else has a
relatively minor impact. People in the past were very unproductive
(despite toiling from dawn till dusk), now thanks to an accumulation
of knowledge, institutional arrangements and tangible capital, workers
are hundreds of times more productive, which in almost all situations
leads to increased wages. Labor laws are just leftover roadblocks,
initially invented to keep blacks out of the North, now existing
mostly due to leftist hypocrisy and widespread economic illiteracy.


 Without the FDA,
> companies were free to market any kind of snake oil they could.

### So? You got a problem with it?


The free
> market didn't build the interstate highway system we all enjoy and I doubt
> it would have been built without government intervention.

### Of course it would. The free market built the railway system. Why
not highways?


 And without
> compulsory education there is no telling where we would be at the moment but
> I am sure evolution would be taught even less.

### Without compulsory education the young ones would not be stuffed
full of government propaganda. That's a clear gain. It's better to be
ignorant of evolution, rather than to think  that threatening other
people into submission is the right way of running a society.

Most of the large bloated
> bureaucracies were created in response to the shortcomings of the free
> market.

### Most of the bloated bureaucracies are the cause of whatever is
blamed on the market. But, of course, whoever allowed government
propaganda to seep into his mind at school, may think otherwise.

>  My point is that it's probably a waste of time debating the free market of
> the past as there are significant differences today.

### Nah, debating the need to eschew violence, and how to build a
society where violence doesn't pay, is always useful.


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