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Capitalism without bankruptcy is like religion without hell, the saying goes. The grain of truth here is that we depend on markets for error-correction; “people are fallible, but competition selects”, as Adam Smith well noted.
But many who fail in the marketplace seek a way out via politics. This includes bail-outs, as well-documented in the recent book, Financing Failure, by Independent Institute Research Fellow, Vern McKinley. The roster of federal bailouts has grown significantly with the addition of marquee names from Detroit and Wall Street.
Unlike hell, bankruptcy usually involves reorganization and can be an opportunity. But the Washington stimulus of 2009 also bailed out state and local governments around the country. This is too bad.
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