Injustice in Finance and Economics

Not everyone accepts the importance of using the standard of justice to evaluate all work that impacts others. In particular, some positive economists hold that values and virtues should have no role in economics. The first section of this chapter suggests that this extreme value-free approach is too narrow. I then go on quote Adam Smith extensively, first hoping that his authority will be persuasive, and secondly as his indignation at injustice identifies many issues that still concern us. The third section looks at the economic rents that particularly caught his ire, arguing that it is right to be indignant, and identifies overcharging, over-servicing, and excessive executive remuneration as some ...

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