The most dangerous monopoly: When caution kills | LearnLiberty





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Published on Jan 28, 2014

"The most dangerous monopoly: When caution kills" by @LearnLiberty
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Everyone wants the items they buy to be safe to use or consume. Prof. Howard Baetjer of Towson University explains that when products undergo third-party certification processes to determine their safety, market forces are able to optimize the amount of testing conducted and consumers can use the information provided by certification firms to make their own decisions. It is difficult to say how much testing is enough: another test can always be run on a product, but at some point the benefit of the extra testing outweighs the costs. In a free-market system, competition among certification firms allows the market to work as it should and prevents both under- and over-testing of products. Conversely, when the government holds the monopoly on safety standards, products are likely to be over-tested, delaying their entry into the market and making them more expensive. Sometimes the costs of such delays cannot be quantified; lives can be lost while life-saving medicines are held up in safety-testing processes.

Check out Prof. Baetjer's book that inspired this video: http://www.freeourmarkets.com/book/

Animated by Tomasz Kaye: http://www.patreon.com/tomaszkaye

► Learn More

http://www.amazon.com/Free-Choose-A-P... [resource]: Chapter 7, "Who Protects the Consumer?"

http://www.amazon.com/Free-Our-Market... [resource]: Howard Baetjer book, specifically Charpter 6 "Market Forces Regulate"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wwBg-X... [video]: Alex Tabarrok lectures on the harm caused by the bad incentives for the FDA

http://fdareview.org/ [resource]: The Independent Institute questions whether the FDA is safe and effective with a body of research that dives in to the history of the FDA

Some resources to back up particular claims:

http://www.ul.com/global/eng/pages/ab... [source]: UL website - About Underwriters' Laboratories

http://www.ul.com/global/eng/pages/co... [source]: UL offers a page of "Additional Resources" that lists other institutions that provide certification or establish safety standards:

http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-288es... [analysis]: Noel Campbell's Cato policy review -"Replace FDA Regulation Of Medical Devices With Third-Party Certification"

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