Apr 21, 2012

The limits of markets?

. . . "markets don't only allocate goods, they also express and promote certain attitudes toward the goods being exchanged." "When we decide," he goes on, "that certain goods may be bought and sold, we decide, at least implicitly, that it is appropriate to treat them as commodities." Which is why citizens can't purchase their way out of jury duty or offer their votes for sale. Or why Catholics can't buy the Eucharist. In many instances, allowing markets to "work" would destroy the "value" of the goods they touch.
That is from Last's review of Sandel's new book What Money Can't Buy: The Moral Limits of Markets in the WSJ. HT: @MarkThoma.

Read a good post on the book by Mostly Economics

Tyler Cowen asks how many times this book has been written by now. Many, of course. Broadly speaking, this is another time

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