Novamente, como fã do pop-star Amartya Sen, farei propaganda de um escrito seu no New York Review of Books. Sen escreveu um pequeno artigo sobre a crise, o capitalismo e as idéias de Smith, passando por Keynes e por seu professor Pigou, tão mencionado negativamente na Teoria Geral. Vou copiar alguns trechos que merecem ser transcritos (agradeço a Ana Barufi por mandar o mapa da mina):
"For example, the pioneering works of Adam Smith in the eighteenth century showed the usefulness and dynamism of the market economy, and why—and particularly how—that dynamism worked [...]""[...]the huge limitations of relying entirely on the market economy and the profit motive were also clear enough even to Adam Smith. Indeed, early advocates of the use of markets, including Smith, did not take the pure market mechanism to be a freestanding performer of excellence, nor did they take the profit motive to be all that is needed.""Smith's economic analysis went well beyond leaving everything to the invisible hand of the market mechanism. He was not only a defender of the role of the state in providing public services, such as education, and in poverty relief (along with demanding greater freedom for the indigents who received support than the Poor Laws of his day provided), he was also deeply concerned about the inequality and poverty that might survive in an otherwise successful market economy.""While Keynes was very involved with the question of how to increase aggregate income, he was relatively less engaged in analyzing problems of unequal distribution of wealth and of social welfare. In contrast, Pigou not only wrote the classic study of welfare economics, but he also pioneered the measurement of economic inequality as a major indicator for economic assessment and policy."
Pensemos duas vezes antes de falar de Smith, Keynes e Pigou. Não que Sen seja a palavra final sobre esses tópicos, mas não ignoremos que de fato Smith era bem menos radical, neoliberal ou seja lá o que for do que se fala por aí e que Keynes talvez tenha sido bem mais conservador do que se diz por aí. Verdade seja dita: o famigerado Pigou foi um dos pioneiros na análise da desigualdade.