“Exit, voice, and boilerplate”

That is the title of my review of Nate Oman’s excellent book “The Dignity of Commerce.” My essay was originally published in The New Rambler; a slightly revised version is now posted on ssrn, the first page of which is included below:

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2 Responses to “Exit, voice, and boilerplate”

  1. Kathy H says:

    I read your paper and if I understand it correctly, you think we should not draw a distinction between moral and immoral commercial practices because once we draw a distinction then what matters is the contract is consistent with morality and morality is in the eye of the beholder. I find this sad and wrong. Yes morality is in the eye of the beholder. But we have to make judgements between right and wrong. Personal best interest between parties making a promises do not necessarily equate to what is best for society. Will a market correct itself. Sometimes, often times, but not always. There are markets for child porn, drugs, slavery, etc. Would you enforce these contracts? I would think not. I have to agree with Oman’s theory of contracts.

    • That is a fair point (and a good summation of the main difference between Oman and myself). Unless there are demonstrable third-party harms, I am very skeptical of drawing a line between moral and immoral commercial practices.

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