6 thoughts on “Competition

  1. Larry J

    Always good? Always is a troublesome word because you can usually find an exceptional case where it isn’t always good. It’s like when you use the word “all” when describing a group of people. Unless you go very high level, such as “All humans are mammals” then you’re going to find exceptions. Even then, you find some people who’re more closely related to reptiles than mammals, if not by their biology then by their actions. Pol Pot, Mao, Stalin and Hitler come to mind – all cold-blooded bastards.

  2. ken anthony

    Answer: Yes. Anti-competition is bad.

    when individual interests are aligned with collective interests

    This is not a requirement; however, when groups anti-compete (such as the civil war example and the homestead act) you don’t have true competition. True competition does not artificially raise the barriers by political or other means.

    The credit card example

    What is the result of ‘exploiting’ overconfident consumers with imperfect willpower? Less of them getting credit! Protecting them produces more of them. Every offer from anybody can be deemed exploitation. That’s why caveat emptor exists. Produce more adults. Let juveniles grow up instead of coddling them into permanent infancy.

    testosterone???

    Don’t bail out the damned investment banks and risk takes care of itself.

    Ratings agencies?

    What is the purpose of ratings? To determine risk levels. An entity that trusts the untrustworthy should fail more often than those that choose more trustworthy entities. This is a win-win. Banks, and the agencies they shouldn’t trust, fail. Failure is the most important part of competition.

    Yes, competition is always good. Anti-competition, pretending to be competition, is bad. People taking responsibility is good.

    Government help, to make competition fair, is the problem as some president in the 80s once said.

  3. Dan DeLong

    Why is there only one federal agency doing anti-trust investigations? Yeah, that’s somewhat tongue-in-cheek, but I think a way to keep government from sliding into ever lower efficiency is to somehow get agencies competing against each other.

    1. ken anthony

      Or just get rid of them and let private services compete. The department of education gets more money every year. Do they produce anything?

      Schools should be a community matter and competition works very well in that case. Let parents keep their taxes and pay the teachers directly. This would insure that homework gets done.

  4. gbaikie

    Competition.
    Is it always good?

    Yes.
    But there different ways to compete.
    The problem is people have some cartoon idea of what is competition.
    For example:
    “While watching my university’s football coach tour the state-of-the-art facilities, I wondered whether competition always benefits society. When does competition devolve into its pejorative synonyms: arms race and race-to-the-bottom?”

    Building state-of-the-art facilities is necessarily competition. Though it does resemble an arms race.
    In other words investing a lot money into a certain types a capital is
    not necessarily being competitive, it can just be stupid.
    Investing in capital is involved in being competitive but it’s not all which is involved with being competitive.

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