Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Today, I learned a new term: Market Fundamentalism

From the Longview Institute (A Progressive Think-Tank):

"Market Fundamentalism is the exaggerated faith that when markets are left to operate on their own, they can solve all economic and social problems. Market Fundamentalism has dominated public policy debates in the United States since the 1980's, serving to justify huge Federal tax cuts, dramatic reductions in government regulatory activity, and continued efforts to downsize the government's civilian programs. While Republicans and conservatives have embraced Market Fundamentalist ideas, many Democrats and liberals have also accepted much of this mistaken belief system."

I stumbled upon this while doing research for my project on privatizing government services focusing on public education. I am so excited that I found this. There is substantial proof that the government does spend its citizens money more productively, contrary to what Market Fundamentalist believe.

In my last post, I talked about the rise of conservatives over the past 30 years. The rise of Market Fundamentalism also began 30 years ago. In fact, 30 years ago, big business decided to align with conservatives in order to benefit their companies.

I find this subject very fascinating. As the Longview Institute reports, it is called "fundamentalism" because it is a belief system that has been ingrained in the public for so long. We have faith in using the market to solve social problems because that's what we've been taught all of our lives.

Too bad it's a flawed belief system and we must get over it if we plan on living productive lives.