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Government's Place in the Market (Boston Review Books) Hardcover – April 18, 2011

2.7 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This tract returns Spitzer to the original impression he made on the political scene as a scourge of Wall Street." Booklist

About the Author

Eliot Spitzer served as the 54th Governor of New York from January 2007 until his resignation on March 17, 2008. In October 2010 he will launch a talk show on CNN with conservative analyst Kathleen Parker.



Eliot Spitzer served as the 54th Governor of New York fromJanuary 2007 until his resignation on March 17, 2008. In October 2010 he willlaunch a talk show on CNN with conservative analyst Kathleen Parker.

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Product Details

  • Series: Boston Review Books
  • Hardcover: 96 pages
  • Publisher: The MIT Press; 1 edition (April 18, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0262015706
  • ISBN-13: 978-0262015707
  • Product Dimensions: 4.5 x 0.2 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 2.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #496,831 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Eliot Spitzer is marketing this product as a book. It has pages numbered to 83. Those pages are 4-1/2" by 7", with margins so great as to leave readers with textual areas of 2-3/4" x 4-1/2", on pages that are 'full'. Which not all the pages are.

Page 1, in its entirety, reads; 'Introduction'. Page 2 is completely blank. Page 3 has two short paragraphs that require only 2-1/2" by 2-3/4" for the written words. Pages 11 and 12 are completely blank. Page 13, contains only; 'I. Government's Place in the Market'. Page 14 is also completely blank. As are pages 55, 56, and 58. Page 57, reads merely; 'II Forum'.

Dean Baker gets to write from page 59-65 (inclusive). Page 66 is blank, and Robert Johnson starts his contribution with a half page of text on 67, finishes with another half page on 74. Pages 75 and 76 are again completely without any text, and page 77 reads; 'III Common Sense'. Followed immediately by a blank page 78. Page 79 takes up less than half the space available to say:

'DEAN BAKER PROPERLY CALLS THE LIB-
ertarian ideology of the past 30 years a mere
façade behind which government actively
participated in the crafting of rules and
priorities that benefited specific groups--
banks, big pharma, certain land owners. I
surely do not believe that more than a few
intellectuals of the right actually subscribed
to the theory that a market could exist with-'

Nice touch that last half word, 'with-'. He probably couldn't have gotten it in like that if he'd earlier written '30' as 'thirty'.

Spitzer concludes with actual paragraphs on pages 80-83. Marcel Proust, he is not. A 'New York minute' has lasted longer than this 'book'. However, it was not too short for Spitzer to write (p.
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Format: Hardcover
I notice that Spitzer, whose book is excellent, easy to read, and compelling, has awakened the vengeful spirit of Ayn Rand as channeled through her libertarian boys. One hostile commentator even resorts to a non-sequitur; speciously conflating the success of a libertarian economic agenda with size of government.

So, let me point out that the U.S.' longest serving Federal Reserve chairman, Alan Greenspan, who occupied senior government positions throughout the period is a self avowed libertarian and was a member of Rand's inner circle. Libertarianism, at least in name, has been the driving philosophy in American economic policy since the revolution in American politics that took place in 1980. We've known it as "economic rationalism". I suggest that you read "Wealth & Democracy" by Kevin Phillips.

And, yes, as Spitzer notes, the libertarians got it drastically wrong.

If you are interested in appreciating the role government should play in a market-based economy, you will find it here as succinctly and simply argued as I have ever seen it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In this short book, Mr. Spitzer tries to determine the role government should have in the markets, and what guidelines the government should follow when intervening in the markets. Mr. Spitzer starts by saying that only the government can ensure that companies are not hurting the integrity of the market; he supports this by citing a case in which they sued an investment bank for recommending a stock, which they were also underwriting. Thus, in effect, according to Mr. Spitzer, defrauding their customers. I agree with his assessment that the government should protect people for possible fraud just like it is supposed to protect people's property rights. From this anecdote, Mr. Spitzer draws his first rule: "Only government can ensure integrity, transparency, and fair dealing." Albeit, I agree with the notion that government should protect its citizens from fraud, I think Mr. Spitzer is missing the point. Government should enforce the law. Fraud is illegal, and the government should prosecute companies that break the law, there is no argument about that. However, the main debate is not whether the government should protect its citizens from fraud and protect their property rights, but rather to what extend should it regulate the markets. This important question is not being addressed.

He also cited another example of how he stopped a company that was polluting the air as proof that government intervention in the market is needed. Again, this is a question of property rights, and not to what degree should the government intervene in the market; if a company is polluting my air, it is violating my property rights and should be punished.

Mr. Spitzer then addresses the question of minimum wage, an issue of government intervention in the market. According to Mr.
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Format: Hardcover
GOVERNMENT'S ROLE IN THE MARKET is, truthfully, a slim book including two well-written critiques of Gov. Spitzer's views. It's brief, well-written, to the point and entirely understandable to any intelligent reader. Unlike some of these overlong harrangues pretending to be reviews, I simply state it presents Spitzer's views on this ever testy subject..you can decide for yourself after reading it (and it won't take long) if he's right and how much he is. I find myself quite persuaded by the commonsense capitalistic orientation of Spitzer..if you have already made up your mind about the subject and want no further mental interference, skip it; if you are open-minded and want to learn something, read it.
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