Talk:Free market

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Unsourced edits and warring[edit]

Any Other Models are Marxist ? where is the source for this ?

Also knowing your enemy helps please learn to differentiate between Socialism (French) & Communism (Marx) . Is that not taught at "hard On for Self prosperity" Institute ?

I seriously cant fathom the mind that thought any criticism/alternatives to Free Markets is Marxist ?

Generalizing this Page lacks any structure at best seems like its composed by a 10year ole fanboy with a Freedman Textbook — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 14:13, 22 August 2013 (UTC)

After discussion a recent edit was made here: [[1]]. It should be remembered that a free market is a technical issue of economic science NOT a political point. Any edits should ideally make reference to economic text books or treatises.

This is plain wrong to separate economics from politics as they were tied together at the time the term "free market" was first in the corn law arguments.Sigiheri (talk) 19:27, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
This is plain wrong. Richard Cantillon pre-dates Cobden and they were already isolating economic market processes as distinct from the state back then. "political economy" is a British invention. It's quite hypocritical of you to take umbridge with my hard stance on science when you're doing the same thing for something that's wrong. Rothbardanswer (talk) 23:49, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

I'm will to consider an alternative view. Please explain Cantillion in the sense that his economics is separate from politics as I am unfamiliar with this view. Thank you in advance.Sigiheri (talk) 23:53, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
Why do I need to explain economic science to you? Is this what the physics talk pages are like? Is it full of scientists explaining each aspect of positivism so that they can change the lead and say the earth goes round the sun and not the other way around? We don't matter. What matters is the economic writings. I've already made the appropriate edits with all the citations you need. If you are affirmed to change it back you need to read economics. Read Karl Popper's The Poverty of Historicism if you're interested. (I've already devoted far to much time to protecting the truth here) Rothbardanswer (talk) 00:28, 6 January 2013 (UTC)

These last edits completely undermine the validity of the article and aren't supported by the source. The phrasing is incorrect and incoherant now. "Setting of prices" means nothing. Prices are qualitatie psychic data that becomes cardinal data through action. A free market can determine an approxomate democratic aggregate but it is never at equilibrium. It certainly isn't "set" by anyone. Unexplained deletion of "Free market anarchism" and sources by User: Battlecry. I looked on his user page and he's openly socialist so this may be political POV pushing.

Ad hominem attacks are NOT appropriate. Who are you to call others names?Sigiheri (talk) 19:27, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
His name is BATTLECRY, and he has a banner saying he's a socialist, and he's editing on the free market page! All his edits are simply deletions of sources and properly structured sentences. I haven't even accused him of anything other than deleting my contributions in what seems a malicious way.
Calling Battlecry names is an ad hominem attack and inappropriate for Wikipedia. (talk) 20:41, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

I'm going to edit the text so it is correct and I'll give multiple citations to the relevant sources.

Notes: 1). Supply and demand doesn't mean anything without reference. e.g. the supply and demand of labour, savings, goods, services, skills. 2). Supply and demand and the structure and hierarchy of capital and consumer good are coordinated by prices (value) 3). A price is psychic. (subjective value theory). To say that a price is "distorted" by mandate and dictate is not loaded language. it is a technical issue of economic science without any political bias to say that a price is undistorted on a free market. 4). A free market is not a structure. A free market is existence in the absence of state regulation.

What does it mean: "free market is existence..."Sigiheri (talk) 19:29, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
Quite frankly I've said this too many times and it is finally wearing my patience: I shouldn't have to explain economics to you. Period. What do you think a free market is? Poverty isn't imposed. Economics is the study of human action. A free market is just existnce without a state. It doesn't preclude any of the features of any specific market. Just the absence of the state. I'm not here to defend economic science. I'm here to contribute without getting drawn into defensive edit wars.

Rothbardanswer (talk) 20:19, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

Rothdardanswer is standing by his post that "a free market is existence in the absence of state regulation". Parsing the sentence, "a free market is existence". How does this make any sense? When questioned, Rothardanswer replies, the question, is, "finally wearing my patience: I shouldn't have to explain economics to you" Then on his own page Rothardanswer says that he is always very polite to people. I feel he is hurting the editing of this free market page, not helping. Sigiheri (talk) 20:27, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
I shouldn't have to explain economic science to you! Read Cantillon, or Mises. That's either the earliest or one of the latest economists and both understand that the market exists independent of the state. How on earth is it my job to defend economic science. If I add multiple eminent sources and write it well isn't that enough? Surely it's your job to read up if you want to undoo my edits? Rothbardanswer (talk) 23:49, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
What exactly should I read of Cantillon or Mises. I have several books by Von Mises, so please point me to the book and passage. You do need to explain and defend your assertions to others on Wikipedia if you want to contribute.Sigiheri (talk) 23:56, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
Read Epistemological Problems of Economics Or Theory and History. Your historicist approach isn't economic science. The free market (the subject of the article) IS. What I'm doing now is teaching anyone reading the nature of economic law in order to give the correct definition of a free market. Ok. Well I have one question. How on earth do you think you're neutral. I assume if you don't know physics you don't edit pages on quantum mechanics and then demand to be taught about it? I've already done my part! I've written the correct definition as I see it and started a talk section (which no one used they just started edit warring) and given all the best links. It isn't POV pushing or violation of neutrality because I'm intimating economic science OTHERS have developed. Your historicist opinions don't get to censor my contribution. It could take hours to teach you basic econ. The burden is on you to source and cite your edits.
I disagree that the free market IS economic science. I don't even believe that economics as it stands is a science in the sense that its theories are testable, fyi. And what is "economic law". Is that just the law? Sigiheri (talk) 00:58, 6 January 2013 (UTC)

5). "Monopolies" is a politically loaded and ambiguous term. A price can't be monopolised on a free market in the absence of government violence, threat or legality. See: [[2]] Rothbardanswer (talk) 14:47, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

If you're going to support an economic argument with a youtube video, walking away from the article now is the least unhappy of the possible outcomes for you, and I would strongly recommend that course of action. bobrayner (talk) 17:11, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
I haven't cited a youtube video in the article. The article now has multiple citations to economic textbooks.

Rothbardanswer (talk) 17:14, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

This page is getting worse not better. Can we stop using as a source. We have the internet and can easily determine the origin of the term "free market". For example,

This article shows that the term "free market" was around well before neo-classical economics and the idea that supply and demand set price. Thus, I would argue that "free market" should be discussed in terms of its historical significance in politics (i.e., the corn laws). Also, it should be discussed in terms of classical economics, not neo-classical economics.Sigiheri (talk) 21:44, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

"Thus, I would argue that "free market" should be discussed in terms of its historical significance in politics" How is anything I've ever said arrogant and this isn't? WHY should we make give this concept of economic theory a historicist bureaucratic analysis? Historicism was the position that there is no economic law. From the standpoint of economic theory history is in the strict sense irrelevant. You're advocating a hard erroneous position without even knowing it! Is this why you were offended that I would suggest we use economic textbooks to describe an economic concept? Rothbardanswer (talk) 23:49, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
The free market is an economic concept more than a political one. If you go to the article on gravity you won't find a classical definition from Copernicus in the lead. Have you looked at my edit? [[3]] They've just deleted citation and damaged sentence structure. I don't see how my edit made the page worse and not better?

Rothbardanswer (talk) 21:28, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

I take issue with your analogy on the grounds that gravity is discovered (presumably by Newton) and a free market is invented by people. I believe that the free market simply means, no regulations. Repealing the corn laws in England made the market more "free."Sigiheri (talk) 21:44, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

Yes well this is my point and this is why I stress the nature of economic science. A free market isn't invented by people any more than value and action are. They have universal existence and laws. Humans have their own values and purposes but we don't create value itself or action or thought themselves any more than we can imagine new colours or change our bodies by thinking. This is the point; we are economies, we don't create economy. You lot are implicitly taking the historicist approach that there is no such thing as economic law. (I can't believe I'm explaining all this!) I think if you lot haven't read economics it isn't authoritative or arrogant to say you shouldn't delete sources and edits because they conflict with your intuition. Rothbardanswer (talk) 23:49, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

The suggestion that we should use economics textbooks only is preposterous, imo. The term and concept of a "free market", simply meaning without regulation, arose before the neo-classical economic theories.Sigiheri (talk) 19:54, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

This article should reference the Manchester school, imo. (talk) 20:06, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

I didn't contribute Cobden is a GREAT source but why do you think the classical economists are better than the more advanced so called "Austrians"? seems silly.

Rothbardanswer (talk) 20:19, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

Once again with the inappropriate remark that my post is "silly". But you are always "polite" aren't you? The reason is that the term "free market" arose prior to neo-classical economics and way before the Austrian school.Sigiheri (talk) 20:31, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
I'm going to put all this aggitation aside (but from first to last comment you've been condescending to me and it's all spiralled into LAYERS of demonstrable hypocrisy) but who cares, back to the article! :) I don't think we should use the originator of the phrase as gospel. Why does a historical source trump contemporary sources? Better yet why not have both? They don't conflict.

Rothbardanswer (talk) 21:28, 5 January 2013 (UTC)

I think that providing the historical perspective would be useful. The neoclassical economics theories assumes a "free market" to get there results. But I would argue that economics is orthogonal to the free market as a free market can exist without economic theories. In a nutshell, I disagree that we should tie the article on "free market" exclusively to neo-classical economics. At the same time, I think the article should explain how economists claim that a free market economy affects supply and demand.Sigiheri (talk) 21:52, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
I'm glad you put your position clearly and stopped insulting me. (I wish you had just done this immediately and not took umbridge with what you thought was arrogance when I defended the scientific position). You're wrong about this. Historicism isn't the method of economic science. You're right to say economy exists without scientific study. Physics exists without positivism. But if we want to write wikipedia articles about what a proton is we give the logical positivist info. The articles on physics aren't full of creationists arguing in the talk section and reverting well cited edits. Economy doesn't exist because of economists. Economic theory can't change economy. Economic theory is the study of economy. What economic theory CAN do is let me write a well sourced lead to this article where I describe a free market acording to the WRITINGS of economists. The whole problem here seems to be you've made the mistake of thinking economists design freedom differently now. They've never been in the business of designing anything. (I shouldn't of had to explain this to you because we're only supposed to intimate economic writings we're supposed to be neutral!). Rothbardanswer (talk) 23:49, 5 January 2013 (UTC)(talk) 23:49, 5 January 2013 (UTC)
The "free market" exists independent of economic theory. Whether the economic theory is accurate is an empirical question that no one has answered to my knowledge. Vernon Smith showed it in an experiment, but no one has show that people act according to theory in a real world setting. Thus, we should describe free market not in terms of economic theory but in terms of law and society. Then discuss the neo classical economic theory that was developed later, in the late 1800s. The point is that if free market exists without economic theory, describe free market first, then discuss economic theory.Sigiheri (talk) 00:04, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
No it actually isn't an empirical theory. If A squared plus B squared doesn't = C squared on a flat plane right angle triangle you haven't discovered a new shape, you've drawn the triangle incorrectly. I'm sure it isn't my job as edditor to explain the epistemological foundation of economic science to you. If you lot don't know economics the least you could do is stop editing my contributions. PEOPLE DON'T ACT ACCORDING TO A THEORY. We're talking about the study of human action. That's what economics is! What you're saying is backwards. We can't describe protons without using positivism. The free market is just a name we've given something using economic theory AND FOR WHAT I HOPE IS THE LAST TIME HERE IT IS:
You're saying that the conclusions of neo-classical economic theory is fact such that empirical test are unnecessary. And you're also saying that economics is the "study of human action." I would hope that anyone reading treat your edits accordingly.Sigiheri (talk) 01:01, 6 January 2013 (UTC)

A free market is an economic system in which the supply and demand of labour, savings, investment, along with the structure and hierarchy between capital and consumer goods, services, and profits are coordinated entirely by individual market values (prices, interest rates, wage rates) rather than by governmental regulation, or bureaucratic mandate and dictate.[1][2][3][4][5] A free market contrasts with a controlled market or regulated market, in which supply or demand are distorted by regulation or direct control by government. An economy composed entirely of free markets is referred to as a free-market economy or free-market anarchism.


I think that paragraph is not suitable as a lead in for the article. Free markets can exist independent of capitalism or economic theory and the lead in should reflect this. I wrote on the talk page about this (at the top), fyi.Sigiheri (talk) 01:05, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
I have removed the material about market socialism emerging as a response to Mises' argument because that does not belong in the lead and is blatant PoV pushing. Criticism of the subject being discussed in the article generally does not belong in the lead, and the language used was loaded (implying that the free-market forms of socialism discussed in the book were "socialist bureaucracies" organized as markets). Bockman's book, which is cited for the inclusion of the socialist tradition of free markets, was not about the Lange-Lerner model and the simulation of markets, it discussed how free-markets have been promoted by early socialists including Pierre-Joseph Prodhoun and later by neoclassical economists such as Jaroslav Vanek and Branko Horvat (who proposed a free market form of socialism, not the Lange model). These forms of socialism were not formed in response to the argument put forth by Mises, and some of these socialist philosophies existed before Mises wrote about socialism.
Rothbardanswer is pushing the same PoV in the market economy article and is gradually transforming the Template:Capitalism sidebar into a sidebar on Austrian school philosophy and methodology.-Battlecry 01:38, 6 January 2013 (UTC)
Wikipedia is not a platform for discussing controversial subjects as per WP:NOTAFORUM. The term "intervene" or "intervention" is more neutral than "distortion" because economists have differing views on the nature of interventions - some view it as a means to correct market failures, such as internalizing externalities or improving access to information for market participants to make more informed choices; while others view interventions as distortions rather than corrective measures. The fact is, regardless of what position one may take, a free market is simply defined as a market structure absent from interventions in the formation of prices. Furthermore, free-markets are more of a political and prescriptive concept rather than a technical economic concept. The "technical" economic concept you are referring to is competitive markets or a state of perfect competition, which economists generally agree is pareto efficient and an optimal state for an economy. But again, economists disagree on how this technical optimal state is to be achieved - some believe interventions are necessary in order to move closer toward this optimum state, while others argue that the unhindered "free" market will approximate this state on its own. Advocating for free markets as a means to this end is prescriptive and therefore political in nature.-Battlecry 09:33, 6 January 2013 (UTC)

Markets cannot exist without government. Money, private property & property rights, corporations & other forms of ownership, contact enforcement and the rule of law are all creatures of government. Without a legal & regulatory system to enforce contracts and punish cheaters, trust cannot exist. And without trust markets break down. Not only can't markets exist without government, human society can't either. All human groups have some form of government. Vilhelmo (talk)

In the hunter gatherer societies in which humans have spent the majority of our existence in, markets did not exist. Vilhelmo (talk) 09:28, 4 July 2013 (UTC)

Definition - Criticism & Suggestions[edit]

The definition is incredibly vague. What government actions, law (rule/regulation) making, intervention, enforcement, institution making, functions is a "free market" free from? Is it free off all government or just some government? What are the criteria used to separate the government interventions a "free market" is free from from those that it is not free off? The inclusion of furthur details would greatly improve the article (talk) 00:34, 11 December 2013 (UTC)

From the article:

A free market is a market system... in which the laws and forces of supply and demand are free from any intervention by a government, price-setting monopoly, or other authority.

The laissez-faire principle expresses a preference for an absence of non-market pressures on prices and wages, such as those from government taxes, subsidies, tariffs, regulation (other than protection from coercion and theft), or government-granted or coercive monopolies

These definitions clearly imply that a "free market" must be free of both Government Money (a Government Monopoly) & Private Property (a Government-Granted Monopoly). Vilhelmo De Okcidento (talk) 22:05, 26 July 2014 (UTC)

Deletions from External Links section[edit]

User:bobrayner took it upon himself to delete two external links I recently added which, if anything, added balance to an external links section that gives undue weight to Austrian School and libertarian viewpoints on the Free Market. The two links in question were both to reliable sources critical of free market ideas, one being a TED conference with scholar Michael J. Sandel and the other being an interview in the Washington Post with the sociologists Fred L. Block and Margaret Somers. Although the user who deleted these two links claimed to be "trimming the link farm," I attribute these deletions to ideological bias and WP:I just don't like it.--C.J. Griffin (talk) 00:41, 12 January 2015 (UTC)

Definition is wrong[edit]

The definition at the head of this article is wrong. A free market is not one where there is no government intervention; rather, it is a market in which people are free to buy and sell voluntarily. See: Price controls make a market not free, but incentives only distort the market rather than changing its nature. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Angmar09 (talkcontribs) 15:49, 27 January 2016 (UTC)

"" POV spam[edit]

Elements such as:

1) Individual Rights: "We are each created with equal individual rights to control and to defend our life, liberty and property and to voluntary contractual exchange."


5) Spontaneous Order: "When individual rights are respected, unregulated competition will maximize economic benefit for society by providing the most goods and services possible at the lowest cost."

These aren't really "principles" but more "beliefs" regarding what one thinks things should be alongside, or favoring a free-market. But technically the free market itself has nothing to do with "equal rights for self-defense". You can have equal rights of self defense without freedom (legal rights for self-defense don't guarantee the actual means and possibilities of self-defense), and at the same time you can have considerable market freedom with a wide variation in rights for self-defense. Having security itself is more fundamental for a free market to work than the enforcement of that security by means of self-defense. One can argue that it's ideal that people were one-man-armies that can resist any sort of coercion, but that's not a requirement for real world free-market situations. The "spontaneous order" is a theoretical prediction of what would derive from a free market, not a principle from which free markets derive.

The item 4, "Government authority must reside at the lowest feasible level" is also not without some arguable high degree of bias, not to mention that the "lowest feasible level" is rather vague. Somalia possibly has what one could describe as "government authority residing a the lowest feasible level", close to "none", but only rarely non-anarchists will see there an ideal example of free-market ideals, more likely they'll find them in highly functional states such as those listed by the Heritage foundation as the freer economies. Which may perhaps provide a better parameter for "lowest feasible level", who knows, but again, that's not immediately clear from this wording. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:30, 5 July 2016 (UTC)

  1. ^ [4] Economics in One Lesson. Henry Hazlitt.
  2. ^ [5] Foundation of the Market Price System. Milton M. Shapiro.
  3. ^ [6] Economic Harmonies. Bastiat.
  4. ^ [7] Basic Economics. Thomas Sowell.
  5. ^ [8].