Professor Berkowitz's Book Reviews Appear in Hoover Institution's Policy Review
The current issue of the Hoover Institution's Policy Review features Professor Peter Berkowitz's review of two books by pro-growth progressives Benjamin M. Friedman (The Moral Consequences of Growth, Harvard University Press) and Gene Sperling (The Pro-Growth Progressive: An Economic Strategy for Shared Prosperity, Simon and Schuster).
Progressives for Growth, Policy Review, April and May, 2006. By Peter Berkowitz.
"And yet, with partisan rage exploding all around, too few conservatives and too few progressives today appreciate that the economic policy of both should be informed by two broad principles which provide a common ground for debating their differences. First, the free market must be firmly supported, both by upholding the rule of law — enforcement of contracts and of liability for accidents, the protection of private property, the maintenance of freedom of communication and movement — and through the restraint of zealous regulators. Second, an affluent, postindustrial, liberal democracy must provide a minimum level of care for those who, owing to poverty, age, illness, or misfortune, are unable to provide for themselves.
It is to be expected that in a free society these two principles will be in more or less constant tension. And it is to be expected that Republicans will tend to be more solicitous of the claims of the market — the individual virtues that it elicits and the benefits that it confers upon society as a whole — and Democrats will tend to be more solicitous of the claims of government's obligation to provide relief from the market's excesses, blind spots, and breakdowns. But it's no longer enough to have a party of capitalism representing the one principle and a party of the welfare state representing the other and to hope that the political process will yield a viable compromise. What Republicans and Democrats need to quarrel about is not the validity of one or the other economic principle, but their proper mix."