Monday, July 06, 2009

Baptists, Bootleggers, and Wal-Mart

In case you haven't heard, Wal-Mart has come out in support of Obama's plan to force employers to provide health insurance to workers. What you haven't heard, is why:
I find it hard to believe that none of the liberal commentators breathlessly celebrating Wal-Mart's "capitulation" on national health care have even entertained the most parsimonious explanation: that Wal-Mart is in favor of this because it raises the barriers to entry in the retail market, and hammers Wal-Mart's competition.
Politics makes strange bedfellows. Here is another example from Clemson University economics professor (and all around nice guy) Bruce Yandle's famous paper: Bootleggers and Baptists: The Education of a Regulatory Economist.


  1. Or they could just think it's the right thing to do for their employees. Not out of the question for the most generous corporation on the planet.

  2. Dont you agree that businesses, especially those as profitable as Wal-Mart, do what's right for themselves, not their employees (and what's best for Wal-Mart is best for consumers).

  3. That may be a false dichotomy. What's good for their employees may in turn be good for Walmart.

    But if this is what you're getting at, I think it's possible for a business to make a decision which will benefit its employees more than its bottom line.

  4. BTW I LOVE that I just got informed of your comment through my RSS reader...

  5. Your new blog looks great!


You are the reason why I do not write privately. I would love to hear your thoughts, whether you agree or not.