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Ron Lazof: Letter writer should listen to both sides of argument

Yes, Jennifer Schubert-Akin’s article was in line with conservative thought.  Mr. Farquhar is correct in this regard, and yes, she and I believe that when there is a discussion of polar extremes, socialism is bad and capitalism is good.   

Socialism refers to government control of the means and modes of production, whereas capitalism leaves the means and modes of production to the marketplace. Our country does not “blend” the two systems; the means and modes of production here remain owned by the people and not the state.

Mr. Farquhar conflates state regulation with state ownership. If you are using income and wealth disparity as your only measuring stick, I must agree that unregulated capitalism is less than perfect. However, that is not the goal of the capitalist economic model as applied in this country. 

The goal here is to provide, in a timely manner, through marketplace interaction, both quantities and qualities of goods and services, as desired by the populace, at the best available — lowest — prices, without surplus or shortage. Assuredly, China, Cuba, Venezuela and North Korea each has more income equality than our country.

But why aspire to averaging down on quality of life? The history of which Mr. Farquhar speaks makes clear that the world economy when creating new wealth is a sea that lifts all boats? Our poorest today are unimaginably better off in terms of life quality than those in the above named polities where shortages and scarcity are a daily way of life.

I do not subscribe to the trope that the Western European economic model, with heavy regulatory and confiscatory taxes in order to support a social welfare state, with the focused attempt at reducing income and wealth disparity, is in any sense better than our national model. But, I am certainly willing to listen to all arguments.

Both of the invited speakers were selected to represent their opposing viewpoints in the hopes of presenting an interesting and meaningful dialogue. I am disappointed that Mr. Farquhar does not appear to have an open mind and is not willing to listen to opposing viewpoints.

If the cost of the ticket is all that keeps him from attending the conference and respectfully listening to the other side of the argument, I would be happy to pick up the tab and consider it a scholarship.

Respectfully, 

Ronald C. Lazof

Steamboat Springs


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