Economics Dictionary of Arguments

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Markets: A market in economics is a physical or virtual place where buyers and sellers come together to exchange goods and services. Markets allow people to specialize in different areas of production, they provide competition, and promote innovation. See also Competition, Progress, Economy, Goods, Exchange, Trade, Innovation.
Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Concept Summary/Quotes Sources

Utilitarianism on Markets - Dictionary of Arguments

Gaus I 106
Markets/Utilitarianism/Gaus: (...) given the assumption of decreasing marginal utility (or decreasing rates of substitution between goods), utilitarianism can justify an egalitarian redistribution of incomes; P. J. Kelly (1990)(1) argues that even before marginalism, Bentham’s utilitarianism endorsed moderate egalitarianism. Given the extent of market failure, utilitarianism can also support a more extensive state. On the other hand, the theory of public choice advances a theory of state failure (Mueller, 2003)(2). If the government action itself suffers from serious failures to promote optimal outcomes, then the market’s failure to do so does not establish a case for intervention. Thus even in the face of serious market failures, a utilitarian may endorse relatively free markets.

1. Kelly, P. J. (1990) Utilitarianism and Distributive Justice. Oxford: Clarendon.
2. Mueller, Dennis C. (2003) Public Choice III. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Gaus, Gerald F. 2004. „The Diversity of Comprehensive Liberalisms.“ In: Gaus, Gerald F. & Kukathas, Chandran 2004. Handbook of Political Theory. SAGE Publications.

Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution. Translations: Dictionary of Arguments
The note [Concept/Author], [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] resp. "problem:"/"solution:", "old:"/"new:" and "thesis:" is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Gaus I
Gerald F. Gaus
Chandran Kukathas
Handbook of Political Theory London 2004

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