It is a critical topic for Arthur Brooks of AEI wrote: "The 2012 presidential campaign is shaping up to be a battle of two economic philosophies. One favors a greater redistributive and regulatory role for the government; the other prioritizes the values of free enterprise, including private property, individual liberty and limited government."
We as a country have ignored being disciplined about the concepts that guide and enable our lives.
This has occurred due to many factors, ideas and productivity improvement is at the heart of it all. Hans Rosling reminds us that labor saving is clearly at the heart of the improvement in life. Can these labor savings be so hard on us all? Who wants to give them up?
It can also be shown that this great improvement in the choices in life do not necessarily worsen the environment nor life span, and clearly provide a higher quality of life.
So why is there so much negativity towards the "free" in free enterprise?
It is not due to the environment getting worse, for take South Korea for instance. As their GDP increased from under $100 per capita some 50 years ago to something close to $30K today, their environment improved. The simple fact that with affluence comes a concern not just for wealth but also the quality of the environment. China is driven by the collective in many ways, and the cost of pollution is not born by the polluters. But the population is growing concerned about how the environment will be improved.
Matt Ridley talking about the innovative ideas that have come over time, and how population has grown, conditions improved despite so many predictions.
Many studies done years ago were predicting catastrophe by now. What was missed was the unknown of the ingenuity of mankind.
Therefore how critical is it to enhance not attenuate this creativity? What are we doing towards that end?