Laissez-faire

Laissez-faire

Discussion
Ask a question about 'Laissez-faire'
Start a new discussion about 'Laissez-faire'
Answer questions from other users
Full Discussion Forum
 
Encyclopedia
In economics, laissez-faire (ˌlɛseɪˈfɛər, lɛsefɛʁ) describes an environment in which transactions between private parties are free from state
State (polity)
A state is an organized political community, living under a government. States may be sovereign and may enjoy a monopoly on the legal initiation of force and are not dependent on, or subject to any other power or state. Many states are federated states which participate in a federal union...

 intervention, including restrictive regulations, taxes, tariffs and enforced monopolies.

The phrase laissez-faire is French
French language
French is a Romance language spoken as a first language in France, the Romandy region in Switzerland, Wallonia and Brussels in Belgium, Monaco, the regions of Quebec and Acadia in Canada, and by various communities elsewhere. Second-language speakers of French are distributed throughout many parts...

 and literally means "let do", but it broadly implies "let it be", or "leave it alone."

Origins of the phrase


According to historical legend, the phrase stems from a meeting in about 1680 between the powerful French finance minister Jean-Baptiste Colbert
Jean-Baptiste Colbert
Jean-Baptiste Colbert was a French politician who served as the Minister of Finances of France from 1665 to 1683 under the rule of King Louis XIV. His relentless hard work and thrift made him an esteemed minister. He achieved a reputation for his work of improving the state of French manufacturing...

 and a group of French businessmen led by a certain M. Le Gendre. When the eager mercantilist minister asked how the French state could be of service to the merchants and help promote their commerce, Le Gendre replied simply "Laissez-nous faire" ("Leave us be", lit. "Let us do").

The anecdote on the Colbert-Le Gendre meeting was related in a 1751 article in the Journal Oeconomique by the French minister and champion of free trade, René de Voyer, Marquis d'Argenson - which happens to also be the phrase's first known appearance in print. Argenson himself had used the phrase earlier (1736) in his own diaries, in a famous outburst:



The laissez faire slogan was popularized by Vincent de Gournay, a French intendant of commerce in the 1750s. Gournay was an ardent proponent of the removal of restrictions on trade and the deregulation of industry in France. Gournay was delighted by the Colbert-LeGendre anecdote, and forged it into a larger maxim all his own: "Laissez faire et laissez passer" ('Let do and let pass'). His motto has also been identified as the longer "Laissez faire et laissez passer, le monde va de lui même!" ("Let do and let pass, the world goes on by itself!"). Although Gournay left no written tracts on his economic policy ideas, he had immense personal influence on his contemporaries, notably the Physiocrats
Physiocrats
Physiocracy is an economic theory developed by the Physiocrats, a group of economists who believed that the wealth of nations was derived solely from the value of "land agriculture" or "land development." Their theories originated in France and were most popular during the second half of the 18th...

, who credit both the laissez-faire slogan and the doctrine to Gournay.

Before d'Argenson or Gournay, P.S. de Boisguilbert
Pierre Le Pesant, sieur de Boisguilbert
Pierre le Pesant, sieur de Boisguilbert or Boisguillebert was a French economist and a Jansenist, one of the inventors of the notion of an economical market....

 had enunciated the phrase "on laisse faire la nature" ('let nature run its course'). D'Argenson himself, during his life, was better known for the similar but less-celebrated motto "Pas trop gouverner" ("Govern not too much"). But it was Gournay's use of the 'laissez-faire' phrase (as popularized by the Physiocrats) that gave it its cachet.

In England, a number of "free trade" and "non-interference" slogans had been coined already during the 17th century. But the French phrase laissez faire gained currency in English-speaking countries with the spread of Physiocratic literature in the late 18th century. The Colbert-LeGendre anecdote was relayed in George Whatley
George Whatley
George Whatley, Esq, was a contemporary, friend and correspondent of Benjamin Franklin. He was also Vice-President and Treasurer of the Foundling Hospital in London....

's 1774 Principles of Trade (co-authored with Benjamin Franklin
Benjamin Franklin
Dr. Benjamin Franklin was one of the Founding Fathers of the United States. A noted polymath, Franklin was a leading author, printer, political theorist, politician, postmaster, scientist, musician, inventor, satirist, civic activist, statesman, and diplomat...

) - which may be the first appearance of the phrase in an English language publication.

Notably, classical economists
Classical economics
Classical economics is widely regarded as the first modern school of economic thought. Its major developers include Adam Smith, Jean-Baptiste Say, David Ricardo, Thomas Malthus and John Stuart Mill....

, such as Thomas Malthus
Thomas Malthus
The Reverend Thomas Robert Malthus FRS was an English scholar, influential in political economy and demography. Malthus popularized the economic theory of rent....

, Adam Smith
Adam Smith
Adam Smith was a Scottish social philosopher and a pioneer of political economy. One of the key figures of the Scottish Enlightenment, Smith is the author of The Theory of Moral Sentiments and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations...

 and David Ricardo
David Ricardo
David Ricardo was an English political economist, often credited with systematising economics, and was one of the most influential of the classical economists, along with Thomas Malthus, Adam Smith, and John Stuart Mill. He was also a member of Parliament, businessman, financier and speculator,...

, did not use the phrase. Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham
Jeremy Bentham was an English jurist, philosopher, and legal and social reformer. He became a leading theorist in Anglo-American philosophy of law, and a political radical whose ideas influenced the development of welfarism...

 used the term, but it was probably James Mill
James Mill
James Mill was a Scottish historian, economist, political theorist, and philosopher. He was a founder of classical economics, together with David Ricardo, and the father of influential philosopher of classical liberalism, John Stuart Mill.-Life:Mill was born at Northwater Bridge, in the parish of...

's reference to the "laissez-faire" maxim (together with "pas trop gouverner") in an 1824 entry for the Encyclopædia Britannica that really brought the term into wider English usage. With the advent of the Anti-Corn Law League
Anti-Corn Law League
The Anti-Corn Law League was in effect the resumption of the Anti-Corn Law Association, which had been created in London in 1836 but did not obtain widespread popularity. The Anti-Corn Law League was founded in Manchester in 1838...

, the term received much of its (English) meaning.

Adam Smith
Adam Smith
Adam Smith was a Scottish social philosopher and a pioneer of political economy. One of the key figures of the Scottish Enlightenment, Smith is the author of The Theory of Moral Sentiments and An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations...

 first used the metaphor of an "invisible hand
Invisible hand
In economics, invisible hand or invisible hand of the market is the term economists use to describe the self-regulating nature of the marketplace. This is a metaphor first coined by the economist Adam Smith...

" in his book The Theory of Moral Sentiments
The Theory of Moral Sentiments
The Theory of Moral Sentiments was written by Adam Smith in 1759. It provided the ethical, philosophical, psychological, and methodological underpinnings to Smith's later works, including The Wealth of Nations , A Treatise on Public Opulence , Essays on Philosophical Subjects , and Lectures on...

to describe the unintentional effects of economic self organization from economic self interest. Some have characterized this metaphor as one for laissez-faire, but Smith never actually used the term himself.

China


During the Han
Han Dynasty
The Han Dynasty was the second imperial dynasty of China, preceded by the Qin Dynasty and succeeded by the Three Kingdoms . It was founded by the rebel leader Liu Bang, known posthumously as Emperor Gaozu of Han. It was briefly interrupted by the Xin Dynasty of the former regent Wang Mang...

, Tang
Tang Dynasty
The Tang Dynasty was an imperial dynasty of China preceded by the Sui Dynasty and followed by the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period. It was founded by the Li family, who seized power during the decline and collapse of the Sui Empire...

, Song
Song Dynasty
The Song Dynasty was a ruling dynasty in China between 960 and 1279; it succeeded the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms Period, and was followed by the Yuan Dynasty. It was the first government in world history to issue banknotes or paper money, and the first Chinese government to establish a...

, and Ming
Ming Dynasty
The Ming Dynasty, also Empire of the Great Ming, was the ruling dynasty of China from 1368 to 1644, following the collapse of the Mongol-led Yuan Dynasty. The Ming, "one of the greatest eras of orderly government and social stability in human history", was the last dynasty in China ruled by ethnic...

 dynasties, Chinese scholar-officials would often debate about the interference the government should have in the economy, such as setting monopolies in lucrative industries and instating price controls. Such debates were often heated with Confucian factions tending to oppose extensive government controls and "Reform" factions favoring such moves. During the Han and Tang, emperors sometimes instated government monopolies in times of war, and abolished them later when the fiscal crisis had passed. Eventually, in the later Song and Ming dynasties, state monopolies were abolished in every industry and were never reinstated during the length of that dynasty, with the government following laissez-faire policies. During the Manchu Qing Dynasty, state monopolies
Government monopoly
In economics, a government monopoly is a form of coercive monopoly in which a government agency or government corporation is the sole provider of a particular good or service and competition is prohibited by law...

 were reinstated, and the government interfered heavily in the economy; many scholars believe this prevented China from developing capitalism.

Europe


In Britain, in 1843, the newspaper The Economist
The Economist
The Economist is an English-language weekly news and international affairs publication owned by The Economist Newspaper Ltd. and edited in offices in the City of Westminster, London, England. Continuous publication began under founder James Wilson in September 1843...

was founded, and became an influential voice for laissez-faire capitalism. In response to the Irish famine of 1846–1849, in which over 1.5 million people died of starvation, they argued that for the government to supply free food for the Irish would violate natural law. Clarendon
George Villiers, 4th Earl of Clarendon
George William Frederick Villiers, 4th Earl of Clarendon KG, GCB, PC , was an English diplomat and statesman.-Background and education:...

, the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland, wrote, "I don't think there is another legislature in Europe that would disregard such suffering."

A group calling itself the Manchester Liberals, to which Richard Cobden
Richard Cobden
Richard Cobden was a British manufacturer and Radical and Liberal statesman, associated with John Bright in the formation of the Anti-Corn Law League as well as with the Cobden-Chevalier Treaty...

 and Richard Wright belonged, were staunch defenders of free trade, and their work was carried on, after the death of Richard Cobden in 1866, by The Cobden Club. In 1867, a free trade treaty was signed between Britain and France, after which several of these treaties were signed among other European countries.

British laissez-faire was not absolute. The United Kingdom company law
United Kingdom company law
United Kingdom company law is the body of rules that concern corporations formed under the Companies Act 2006. Also regulated by the Insolvency Act 1986, the UK Corporate Governance Code, European Union Directives and court cases, the company is the primary legal vehicle to organise and run business...

, the Limited Liability Act 1855
Limited Liability Act 1855
The Limited Liability Act 1855 was an Act of the Parliament of the United Kingdom that first allowed limited liability for corporations that could be established by the general public in the UK.-Overview:...

, and the Joint Stock Companies Act 1856
Joint Stock Companies Act 1856
The Joint Stock Companies Act 1856 was a consolidating statute, recognised as the founding piece of modern United Kingdom company law legislation.-Overview:...

 were exceptions.

Laissez-faire policy was never absolute in any nation, and at the end of the 19th century, European countries again took up some economic protectionism and interventionism. France for example, started cancelling its free trade agreements with other European countries in 1890. Germany's protectionism
Protectionism
Protectionism is the economic policy of restraining trade between states through methods such as tariffs on imported goods, restrictive quotas, and a variety of other government regulations designed to allow "fair competition" between imports and goods and services produced domestically.This...

 started (again) with a December 1878 letter from Bismarck
Otto von Bismarck
Otto Eduard Leopold, Prince of Bismarck, Duke of Lauenburg , simply known as Otto von Bismarck, was a Prussian-German statesman whose actions unified Germany, made it a major player in world affairs, and created a balance of power that kept Europe at peace after 1871.As Minister President of...

, resulting in the iron and rye tariff
Tariff
A tariff may be either tax on imports or exports , or a list or schedule of prices for such things as rail service, bus routes, and electrical usage ....

 of 1879.

United States


Frank Bourgin's 1989 study of the Constitutional Convention
Constitutional convention
Constitutional convention may refer to:* Constitutional convention , an informal and unmodified procedural agreement.* Constitutional convention , a meeting of delegates to adopt a new constitution or revise an existing constitution.- Constitutional conventions by country :* Constitutional...

 shows that direct government involvement in the economy was intended by the Founders. This had more to do with the perceived need to overcome the economic and financial chaos the nation suffered under the Articles of Confederation
Articles of Confederation
The Articles of Confederation, formally the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, was an agreement among the 13 founding states that legally established the United States of America as a confederation of sovereign states and served as its first constitution...

, and nothing to do with any desire to have a statist economy. The goal was to ensure that dearly won political independence was not lost by being economically and financially dependent on the powers and princes of Europe. The creation of a strong central government able to promote science, invention, industry and commerce, was seen as an essential means of promoting the general welfare and making the economy of the United States strong enough for them to determine their own destiny.

Notable examples of government intervention in the period prior to the Civil War include the establishment of the Patent Office
Patent office
A patent office is a governmental or intergovernmental organization which controls the issue of patents. In other words, "patent offices are government bodies that may grant a patent or reject the patent application based on whether or not the application fulfils the requirements for...

 in 1802; the creation of the Coast and Geodetic Survey in 1807 and other measures to improve river and harbor navigation; the various Army expeditions to the west, beginning with Lewis and Clark's Corps of Discovery in 1804 and continuing into the 1870s, almost always under the direction of an officer from the Army Corps of Topographical Engineers
Corps of Topographical Engineers
The U.S. Army Corps of Topographical Engineers, was separately authorized on 4 July 1838, consisted only of officers, and was used for mapping and the design and construction of federal civil works such as lighthouses and other coastal fortifications and navigational routes. It included such...

, and which provided crucial information for the overland pioneers that followed; the assignment of Army Engineer officers to assist or direct the surveying and construction of the early railroads and canals; the establishment of the First Bank of the United States
First Bank of the United States
The First Bank of the United States is a National Historic Landmark located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania within Independence National Historical Park.-Banking History:...

 and Second Bank of the United States
Second Bank of the United States
The Second Bank of the United States was chartered in 1816, five years after the First Bank of the United States lost its own charter. The Second Bank of the United States was initially headquartered in Carpenters' Hall, Philadelphia, the same as the First Bank, and had branches throughout the...

 as well as various protectionist measures (e.g., the tariff of 1828
Tariff of 1828
The Tariff of 1828 was a protective tariff passed by the Congress of the United States on May 19, 1828, designed to protect industry in the northern United States...

). Several of these proposals met with serious opposition, and required a great deal of horse trading to be enacted into law. For instance, the First National Bank would not have reached the desk of President George Washington
George Washington
George Washington was the dominant military and political leader of the new United States of America from 1775 to 1799. He led the American victory over Great Britain in the American Revolutionary War as commander-in-chief of the Continental Army from 1775 to 1783, and presided over the writing of...

 in the absence of an agreement that was reached between Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton
Alexander Hamilton was a Founding Father, soldier, economist, political philosopher, one of America's first constitutional lawyers and the first United States Secretary of the Treasury...

 and several southern members of Congress to locate the capital in the District of Columbia. In contrast to Hamilton and the Federalists was the opposing political party the Democratic-Republicans.

Most of the early opponents of laissez-faire capitalism in the United States subscribed to the American School
American School (economics)
The American School, also known as "National System", represents three different yet related constructs in politics, policy and philosophy. It was the American policy for the 1860s to the 1940s, waxing and waning in actual degrees and details of implementation...

. This school of thought was inspired by the ideas of Alexander Hamilton, who proposed the creation of a government-sponsored bank
First Bank of the United States
The First Bank of the United States is a National Historic Landmark located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania within Independence National Historical Park.-Banking History:...

 and increased tariffs to favor northern industrial interests. Following Hamilton's death, the more abiding protectionist influence in the antebellum period came from Henry Clay
Henry Clay
Henry Clay, Sr. , was a lawyer, politician and skilled orator who represented Kentucky separately in both the Senate and in the House of Representatives...

 and his American System
American System (economic plan)
The American System, originally called "The American Way", was a mercantilist economic plan that played a prominent role in American policy during the first half of the 19th century...

.

In the mid-19th century, the United States
United States
The United States of America is a federal constitutional republic comprising fifty states and a federal district...

 followed the Whig
Whig Party (United States)
The Whig Party was a political party of the United States during the era of Jacksonian democracy. Considered integral to the Second Party System and operating from the early 1830s to the mid-1850s, the party was formed in opposition to the policies of President Andrew Jackson and his Democratic...

 tradition of Economic nationalism
Economic nationalism
Economic nationalism is a term used to describe policies which emphasize domestic control of the economy, labor and capital formation, even if this requires the imposition of tariffs and other restrictions on the movement of labor, goods and capital. It opposes globalization in many cases, or at...

, which included increased state control, regulation and macroeconomic development of infrastructure
Infrastructure
Infrastructure is basic physical and organizational structures needed for the operation of a society or enterprise, or the services and facilities necessary for an economy to function...

. Public works
Public works
Public works are a broad category of projects, financed and constructed by the government, for recreational, employment, and health and safety uses in the greater community...

 such as the provision and regulation transportation such as railroads took effect. The Pacific Railway Acts
Pacific Railway Acts
The Pacific Railroad Acts were a series of acts of Congress that promoted the construction of the transcontinental railroad in the United States through authorizing the issuance of government bonds and the grants of land to railroad companies. The Pacific Railroad Act of 1862 was the original act...

 provided the development of the First Transcontinental Railroad
First Transcontinental Railroad
The First Transcontinental Railroad was a railroad line built in the United States of America between 1863 and 1869 by the Central Pacific Railroad of California and the Union Pacific Railroad that connected its statutory Eastern terminus at Council Bluffs, Iowa/Omaha, Nebraska The First...

. In order to help pay for its war effort in the American Civil War
American Civil War
The American Civil War was a civil war fought in the United States of America. In response to the election of Abraham Lincoln as President of the United States, 11 southern slave states declared their secession from the United States and formed the Confederate States of America ; the other 25...

, the United States government imposed its first personal income tax
Income tax
An income tax is a tax levied on the income of individuals or businesses . Various income tax systems exist, with varying degrees of tax incidence. Income taxation can be progressive, proportional, or regressive. When the tax is levied on the income of companies, it is often called a corporate...

, on August 5, 1861, as part of the Revenue Act of 1861
Revenue Act of 1861
The Revenue Act of 1861, formally cited as , included the first U.S. Federal income tax statute . The Act, motivated by the need to fund the Civil War , imposed an income tax to be "levied, collected, and paid, upon the annual income of every person residing in the United States, whether such...

 (3% of all incomes over US $800; rescinded in 1872).

Following the Civil War, the movement towards a mixed economy
Mixed economy
Mixed economy is an economic system in which both the state and private sector direct the economy, reflecting characteristics of both market economies and planned economies. Most mixed economies can be described as market economies with strong regulatory oversight, in addition to having a variety...

 accelerated. Protectionism
Protectionism
Protectionism is the economic policy of restraining trade between states through methods such as tariffs on imported goods, restrictive quotas, and a variety of other government regulations designed to allow "fair competition" between imports and goods and services produced domestically.This...

 increased with the McKinley Tariff
McKinley Tariff
The Tariff Act of 1890, commonly called the McKinley Tariff, was an act framed by Representative William McKinley that became law on October 1, 1890. The tariff raised the average duty on imports to almost fifty percent, an act designed to protect domestic industries from foreign competition...

 of 1890 and the Dingley Tariff of 1897. Government regulation of the economy expanded with the enactment of the Interstate Commerce Act of 1887
Interstate Commerce Act of 1887
The Interstate Commerce Act of 1887 is a United States federal law that was designed to regulate the railroad industry, particularly its monopolistic practices. The Act required that railroad rates be "reasonable and just," but did not empower the government to fix specific rates...

 and the Sherman Anti-trust Act.

The Progressive Era
Progressive Era
The Progressive Era in the United States was a period of social activism and political reform that flourished from the 1890s to the 1920s. One main goal of the Progressive movement was purification of government, as Progressives tried to eliminate corruption by exposing and undercutting political...

 saw the enactment of more controls on the economy, as evidenced by the Wilson Administration's New Freedom
The New Freedom
The New Freedom comprises the campaign speeches and promises of Woodrow Wilson in the 1912 presidential campaign. They called for less government, but in practice as president he added new controls such as the Federal Reserve System and the Clayton Antitrust Act. More generally the "New Freedom" is...

 program.

Following World War I
World War I
World War I , which was predominantly called the World War or the Great War from its occurrence until 1939, and the First World War or World War I thereafter, was a major war centred in Europe that began on 28 July 1914 and lasted until 11 November 1918...

 and the Great Depression
Great Depression
The Great Depression was a severe worldwide economic depression in the decade preceding World War II. The timing of the Great Depression varied across nations, but in most countries it started in about 1929 and lasted until the late 1930s or early 1940s...

, Keynesian policies
Keynesian economics
Keynesian economics is a school of macroeconomic thought based on the ideas of 20th-century English economist John Maynard Keynes.Keynesian economics argues that private sector decisions sometimes lead to inefficient macroeconomic outcomes and, therefore, advocates active policy responses by the...

turned the state into a mixed economy
Mixed economy
Mixed economy is an economic system in which both the state and private sector direct the economy, reflecting characteristics of both market economies and planned economies. Most mixed economies can be described as market economies with strong regulatory oversight, in addition to having a variety...

. The United States, in the 1980s, for example, sought to protect its automobile industry by "voluntary" export restrictions from Japan. Pietro S. Nivola wrote in 1986:

See also



  • Anarcho-capitalism
    Anarcho-capitalism
    Anarcho-capitalism is a libertarian and individualist anarchist political philosophy that advocates the elimination of the state in favour of individual sovereignty in a free market...

  • Capitalism
    Capitalism
    Capitalism is an economic system that became dominant in the Western world following the demise of feudalism. There is no consensus on the precise definition nor on how the term should be used as a historical category...

  • Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal
    Capitalism: the Unknown Ideal
    Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal is a collection of essays, mostly by Ayn Rand, with additional essays by her associates Nathaniel Branden, Alan Greenspan and Robert Hessen. The book focuses on the moral nature of laissez-faire capitalism and private property...

     by Ayn Rand
    Ayn Rand
    Ayn Rand was a Russian-American novelist, philosopher, playwright, and screenwriter. She is known for her two best-selling novels The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged and for developing a philosophical system she called Objectivism....

  • Classical liberalism
    Classical liberalism
    Classical liberalism is the philosophy committed to the ideal of limited government, constitutionalism, rule of law, due process, and liberty of individuals including freedom of religion, speech, press, assembly, and free markets....

  • Criticisms of capitalism
    Criticisms of capitalism
    Capitalism has been the subject of criticism from many perspectives during its history. Criticisms range from people who disagree with the principles of capitalism in its entirety, to those who disagree with particular outcomes of capitalism...

  • Economic liberalism
    Economic liberalism
    Economic liberalism is the ideological belief in giving all people economic freedom, and as such granting people with more basis to control their own lives and make their own mistakes. It is an economic philosophy that supports and promotes individual liberty and choice in economic matters and...

  • Free market
    Free market
    A free market is a competitive market where prices are determined by supply and demand. However, the term is also commonly used for markets in which economic intervention and regulation by the state is limited to tax collection, and enforcement of private ownership and contracts...

  • Libertarianism
    Libertarianism
    Libertarianism, in the strictest sense, is the political philosophy that holds individual liberty as the basic moral principle of society. In the broadest sense, it is any political philosophy which approximates this view...

  • Perspectives on capitalism
    Perspectives on capitalism
    Throughout modern history, a variety of influential perspectives on capitalism have shaped modern economic thought. Adam Smith was one of the first influential writers on the topic, with his book The Wealth of Nations, which is generally considered to be the start of classical economics which...

  • Market anarchism
    Market anarchism
    Free-market anarchism refers to an individualist anarchist philosophy in which monopoly of force held by government would be replaced by a competitive market of non-monopolistic organizations providing security, justice, and other defense services...

  • Market fundamentalism
    Market fundamentalism
    Market fundamentalism is a pejorative term applied to a strong belief in the ability of laissez-faire or free market economic views or policies to solve economic and social problems....

  • Minarchism
    Minarchism
    Minarchism has been variously defined by sources. It is a libertarian capitalist political philosophy. In the strictest sense, it maintains that the state is necessary and that its only legitimate function is the protection of individuals from aggression, theft, breach of contract, and fraud, and...

  • Objectivism
    Objectivism (Ayn Rand)
    Objectivism is a philosophy created by the Russian-American philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand . Objectivism holds that reality exists independent of consciousness, that human beings have direct contact with reality through sense perception, that one can attain objective knowledge from perception...

  • Ordoliberalism
    Ordoliberalism
    Ordoliberalism is a school of liberalism that emphasised the need for the state to ensure that the free market produces results close to its theoretical potential . The theory was developed by German economists and legal scholars such as Walter Eucken, Franz Böhm, Hans Grossmann-Doerth and Leonhard...

  • Positive non-interventionism
    Positive non-interventionism
    Positive non-interventionism was the economic policy of Hong Kong; this policy can be traced back to the time when Hong Kong was under British rule...

  • Too big to fail
    Too Big to Fail
    Too Big to Fail is a television drama film in the United States broadcast on HBO on May 23, 2011. It is based on the non-fiction book Too Big to Fail by Andrew Ross Sorkin. The TV film was directed by Curtis Hanson...


Further reading


by Christian Gerlach, London School of Economics – March 2005