You misunderstood me — probably my fault. I spend a lot of energy explaining there are two ways to solve problems without top-down direction — for profit (the commercial world) and not-for-profit (the world where altruism and caring and charity take center stage. So-called anti-gouging laws result in a world with top-down (government) aid and not-for-profit aid. My suggestion is that I wouldn’t want to rely only on these alone in the face of danger or disaster. I think you get more bottled water and more generators and more boats and more everything when you allow people to profit. I don’t think profits are the only thing that motivates people even when they act commercially.

And I couldn’t agree more with you that money is not the only thing that motivates people. You might enjoy my book on Adam Smith. He’d agree with both of us. And this short essay I wrote on the role of religion expands on the point that we don’t just care about money and things.

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I host the weekly podcast, EconTalk and I'm the co-creator of the Keynes-Hayek rap videos. My latest book is How Adam Smith Can Change Your Life.

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