Saturday, October 06, 2007

Pro-market policies are left wing

Alberto Alesina and Francesco Giavazzi Guido Tabellini © at voxEU.org:
Labour-market flexibility, deregulation of the service industry, pension reforms and greater competition in university funding is not anti-equality. Such reforms shift financing from taxpayers to the users themselves and, as such, tend to eliminate rents. They tend to increase productivity by basing rewards on merit rather than on being an insider. They tend to open up opportunities for younger workers who are not yet well-connected. Pursuing pro-market reforms does not imply facing a trade-off between efficiency and social justice. In this sense, pro-market policies are “left wing”, if that means reducing the economic privileges enjoyed by “insiders”.
Makes more sense than Italy's Economy Minister:
More than a third of Italian men over the age of 30 live at home with their parents, a phenomenon blamed on sky-high apartment rents and bleak job prospects as much as a liking for mamma's cooking.

Economy Minister Tommaso Padoa-Schioppa offered to come to the rescue with a 1,000 euro ($1,411) tax break for 20- and 30-something Italians who rent. He said the move was aimed at "bamboccioni," which evokes images of clumsy, overgrown male babies. "We must send those we call 'big babies' out of the house," the minister told a Senate hearing on the 2008 draft budget.

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