Government's Role in Economic Life

Government's Role in Economic Life

Government's Role in Economic Life

Government's Role in Economic Life

Excerpt

I undertook to write this book with reluctance and humility. Assumption of the responsibility for covering adequately so overwhelming a subject as government's role in economic life should not be taken lightly. Furthermore, I do not think that anyone is omniscient enough to come always to the "right" judgment about problems in so controversial a field. Yet I feel strongly about the need for much more careful thought by more people on all phases of the problem of government regulation of economic activity. The nature of the resolution of the many issues that continuously arise will have much to do with the way we all shall live tomorrow. It was in the hope that I perhaps could, in a small way, stimulate thinking about and shed some light on the broader questions of government's role in economic life that I found the courage to undertake and complete this study.

This book was prepared primarily with the needs of my students in mind. But it was also written for the average person who thinks seriously about government economic actions and their relations to private economic life.

In my classroom work on the subject of government's role in economic life, my students and I felt the need for a reasonably comprehensive and unified background statement against which current problems could be treated with more understanding. It is essential to put discussion of current individual problems of government regulation in a setting which includes the fundamental processes and forces leading government to act or not to act in the past; the sort of current relationships which past actions or inactions have created between government and private economic life; the broad objectives which now seem to exist for the operation of our social and economic systems, within which government- private economic relationships of today and tomorrow will be determined; and some broad guides and principles which may, if followed, help us to ensure an appropriate role for government in the economic . . .

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