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The 21st-Century Case for a Managed Economy: The role of disequilibrium, feedback loops and scientific method in post-crash economics by Sean Harkin

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11. Conclusion: The Need for Change

For decades, free-market economists have told a consistent story. Markets are rational, efficient, stable and fair, and even volatile financial markets should be left mostly to their own devices. Governments, meanwhile, should seek to maintain basic institutions but should otherwise ‘stay out of the way’ of market forces. This is supposedly the only route to prosperity, and is even held to be the only economic system consistent with human freedom. From the late 1970s, one government after another was influenced by this perspective and a distinctive era of ‘neoliberal’ capitalism was born.

But the free-market ideology is a dangerous one. It creates great financial and economic instability, as demonstrated ...

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