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Hank Sedan

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  1. Seems common for Randian thinking to deal with uncomfortable economic situations -- situations where regulation makes economic sense -- by concluding that people could just live in total isolation. Strange in light of economics being all about exchange.
  2. People ought to stop asserting that large start-up costs necessarily entail a monopoly situation. High capital requirements need not be an insurmountable barrier to entry. In a competitive market scenario, it will make sense for investors to pour money into a high start-up cost venture that replicates an existing producer if the investors believe the market can sustain greater supply and return a profit. In the utilities context, which seems to be one referred to frequently, a high capital requirement, by itself, is not the primary reason why we tend to think of those as exemplar monopolie
  3. to ToyoHabu I don’t think I’m saying people are entitled to anything. I still have to pay for the natural gas I use. I’m saying that the market doesn’t work well unless there is regulation, and that regulation is in fact in everyone’s interest -- buyers and sellers. Rational companies in natural monopoly situation won’t even get into the market if they think there is a likely chance that there will be competition that will preclude the recovery of the initial costs. This is too unspecific. “there are always alternatives” is not a priori true. Why make this assumption? My
  4. to Spiral Architect My idea was to conjure up the clearest circumstances in which regulation provides for a more optimal allocation of resources. Objectivists on this forum seem to frequently conflate two types of arguments. One is empirical: unregulated capitalism is the most efficient allocation of resources. The other is normative: government regulation, as a form of coercion that restricts the will of some human being, is wrong. But these aren’t the same. Randian capitalism would in many instances lead to market failures. While there is a normative argument that gov’t ought n
  5. There has been a little discussion of the objectivist view on natural monopolies, but I haven’t seen any answers which fairly square up to the problem, so I’ll re-ask the question: Why should or shouldn’t the government regulate a natural monopoly? It’s important to understand, first off, what is meant by natural monopoly because there is often confusion over this. A natural monopoly does not exist merely because initial investment costs are high, though this is a central feature of a natural monopoly. Additionally, a natural monopoly does not exist merely because a duplication of infrast
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