Heads I Win, Tails You Lose

Glen Whitman notices a neat little anti-capitalist tactic:

If markets don?t produce a wide array of choices, they are condemned for imposing the values of some consumers (those with the greatest influence on producers? choices about product characteristics) on the population at large. We hear this kind of argument from the high-brow critics of pop culture (?Britney?s driving out Mozart!?), despite the wide variety of non-pop cultural products also available. On the other hand, if markets do produce a wide array of choices (as is, in general, the case), then we get the criticisms discussed in the previous post: that people are paralyzed by choice, that they spend too much time making decisions, that they are less content, etc. One way or another, the market takes the blame.

Glen also mentions food prices and alcohol anti-trust regulations as other examples of this ?damned if you do, damned if you don?t? phenomenon. If you can think of others, he's starting a collection.

Share this