Reading the fourth article from The Korea Herald issued as of November 6, 2012 convinced me about the influence of mainstream social theme about the alleged “crimes” of free market. The writer identified two among those crimes. These are the increasing socio-economic inequity and the collapse of traditional family values that left both the children and the elderly unattended. Due to free market failure as the mainstream rhetoric wants us to believe, the entry of government welfare is now justified. And this serves as the rallying point of the three presidential candidates in South Korea: Park Geun-hye, Moon Jae-in, and Ahn Cheol-soo.
Among the three candidates, it was reported that Moon Jae-in is the boldest in his welfare platform and dreams to be “ ‘the first president of South Korea as a welfare state’ ”. Ahn Cheol-soo’s source of financing for his “reliable welfare” program is commendable. It is similar to the monetary policies advocated by Ron Paul, the Tea Party US Congressman who is passionate to spread the Austrian economics way of thinking. Ahn’s “cut government spending” and “tax exemption measures” are really great ideas that will somehow help ease the existing economic situation in the country due to global crisis.
Listening to the voice of Austrian economists, a different diagnosis would come out concerning the alleged crimes of the free market in South Korea. They identify government’s intervention of the free-market as the primary culprit. Mainstream media and the academic community feed the public with such wrong notion for the government’s interventionist policy to escape public attention.
This fourth article really caused me to think hard. So I searched for other sites to learn how they look at the situation in South Korea. I typed in the search browser two lines of thoughts: South Korea and welfare state and South Korea and Austrian economics. And among numerous links, I chose four:
- Thoughts about Austrian Economists in the Present Context and Investing
- Good News from Korea, China, and Vietnam
- It’s time for Japan and South Korea to go Nuclear
- Why is South Korea so Successful?
So in addition to the writing task I mentioned in the previous article, I add the above four. I am also thinking about reflecting on the economic situation in my country, the Philippines.