Mark Thoma: The Polarized Economic Policy Debate: All Markets Fail, Some More Than Others: Noted for August 19, 2013
I, and others like me, are more than willing to say that most of the time, markets work well and we ought to leave them alone. Government should stay out of the way…. But we on the left also recognize that sometimes markets can fail--in fact all markets fail to some degree when measured against the requirements for the pure competitive markets found in textbooks--and when those failures are severe enough, government intervention can make them work better…. I could understand if the right wanted to debate where the line is…. But to simply say that government should never intervene in any case at all gets us nowhere…. Debating] where the line between intervening, or not, ought to be… is a debate that doesn't seem possible right now due to the polarized, uncompromising position that one side has taken.