Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Kenneth Arrow on socialism

A cautious case for socialism from 1978. Commentary on this article and also "Two cheers for government regulation" by Daniel B. Klein in Kenneth J. Arrow. From the commentary "Kenneth Arrow was of the generation shaped by the Great Depression. Like many of them, he embraced socialism at an early age, and going forward his work was shaped by a deeply leftist sensibility. From several autobiographical reflections, it seems that over the decades Arrow’s thinking has continually moved from ideals he associates with socialism to a more pragmatic—or, perhaps, resigned—sense of reforming actually existing social democracy."
Related The misunderstanding at the core of economics has this quote from the article of Arrow above:
“In a system where virtually all resources are available for a price, economic power can be translated into political power by channels too obvious for mention. In a capitalist society, economic power is very unequally distributed, and hence democratic government is inevitably something of a sham.”

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