White market

The white market, in libertarian economic theory, is the legal, official, authorized, or intended market for goods and services. It is distinct from the black market of illegally trafficked goods and the gray market, in which commodities are distributed through channels which, while legal, are unofficial, unauthorized, or unintended by the original manufacturer. It is also sometimes distinguished from the pink market of state-sanctioned, but immoral activities, such as wars of aggression, and the red market of immoral activities banned by the state. The white market in some goods, such as adoption of children, has been criticized as being inefficient due to government regulation.[1] The New Libertarian Manifesto states:[2]

In the social-democrat countries, the black market is smaller because the 'white market' of legally accepted market transactions is larger, but the former is still quite prominent...Furthermore, even large businesses today could go partially counter-economic, leaving a portion in the "white market" to satisfy government agents and pay some modicum of taxes and report a token number of workers. The rest of the business would (and already often does) expand off the books with independent contractors who supply, service, and distribute the finished product. Nobody, no business, no worker, and no entrepreneur need be white market.

In 1975, the New Libertarian Alliance left their campuses and aboveground “white market” jobs and went full-time counter-economic for a decade to prove the strategy's viability.[3] Murray Rothbard criticized agorism, stating that it was unrealistic that the black market could compete with the white market in industries such as production of automobiles, steel and concrete and that the industries that it could compete in were "marginalia", too small to be relevant even in aggregate.[4]

See also


  1. LA Alexander, LH O'Driscoll (1980), Stork Markets: An Analysis of Baby-selling (PDF), The journal of libertarian studies
  2. New Libertarian Manifesto (PDF)
  3. The Last, Whole Introduction to Agorism, Papers of the Libertarian Left
  4. Rothbard, Murray (November 10, 1980), Konkin on Libertarian Strategy
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