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toasted_peanut_in_shellPeanut products tainted with salmonella have meant closing a plant in Blakely, Georgia, the “peanut capital of the world.” And here is an article that argues capitalism requires regulation. The event’s timing makes it a perfect boost to the idealistic turn away from the deregulation of supply-side theory. In the words of the author–

(People) are re-learning long-lost lessons about the perils of unfettered capitalism. Along with former Wall Street secretaries and unemployed bank clerks, they have become collateral damage in an age of deregulation and an ideology that defined government as always the problem, never the solution…

Now, however, Georgia legislators, including Republicans, are suddenly clamoring for stiffer laws and more oversight. Indeed, the entire country is in the midst of a cultural shift as Americans rediscover the many reasons that smart government oversight of commerce and industry makes good sense.

No one seems to remember the very similar problems with tainted milk a few months ago.  The response in China was similar, that regulation needed to be more thorough and better policed.

These food problems, and the problems in the financial sector, make me think of Sinclair Lewis. How many times do we need to learn the same lessons?

Maybe The Jungle and Main Street should be required reading for business students.


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