Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Dems Have to Challenge "Market Fundamentalism"

Here is a phrase that we just ran across: "market fundamentalism." It is a term used by critics of conservatives who insist that "free markets" will cure every social ill known to man and that government is never the solution, but always the problem. The author of the article linked to in this entry's title points out that progressives need to start attacking this philosophy. She argues that until we attack this philosophy, we will not be able to make permanent political gains because the underlying philosophy that has shaped politics over the last 27 years will not have been culturally discredited.

Since the 1960s, conservatives have pushed the idea that government is inherently wasteful and inefficent. They push the idea that government programs don't work and can't compare with the marketplace.

This philosophy is behind charter schools, privatizating Social Security, Bush's new health plan, which will tax working families for employer furnished health insurance, and the decision to shut down Iraq's state owned companies putting thousands of people out of work. In the past while Democrats argued against certain policies advocated by market fundamentalims, they usually have not argued against the philosophy itself.

This is starting to change. More and more progressives and Democrats are challenging the idea that unfettered markets always produce good results for society. They are challenging the idea that government programs are inherently bad. This is good because progressives have to do to conservatives what they have been doing for the last 27 years: attack the underlying philosophy of the opposition. Read the article linked to in this entry's title. We think you will find it thought-provoking.

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