An interesting piece
with speculation on possible reasons for why people seem to be biased against markets. To summarize:
- Market processes are not visible. For instance, when a government taxes its citizens and offers a subsidy to some producers, what is seen is the money taken and the money received. What is unseen is the amount of production that would occur in the absence of such transfers.
- Markets are intrinsically probabilistic and therefore marked with uncertainty, like other living organisms, we are loss-averse and try to minimise uncertainty
- Humans may be motivated to place their trust in processes that are (or at least seem to be) driven by agents rather than impersonal factors.
The last point reminded me of speculation from the recent LessWrong article Conspiracy Theories as Agency Fictions:
Do all theories of legitimacy also perhaps rest on the same cognitive failings that conspiracy theories do? The difference between a shadowy cabal we need to get rid of and an institution worthy of respect may be just some bad luck.
Before thinking about these points and debating them I strongly recommend you read the full article.