self-interest

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self-interest

the belief that individuals are the best judges of their own interests and should be left to make decisions themselves as customers, employees or entrepreneurs. Self-interest provides a justification for PRIVATE-ENTERPRISE ECONOMIES, which use the PRICE SYSTEM to allocate resources. Compare PATERNALISM, CENTRALLY PLANNED ECONOMIES.
References in periodicals archive ?
This assumption was the necessity of fostering "virtue" as an antidote to self-interestedness and the evils that flowed from it.
While there is no way of measuring the phenomenon, it is likely that going to vote in a public place at the same time as one's neighbors promotes the sense of civic responsibility that all citizens ought to feel, so as to temper mere self-interestedness or thinking of politics as just a form of entertainment.
Awkward declares, "The self-interestedness of a black male feminist would be manifested in part by his concern with exploring "a man's place" (p.
Yet his following reaction illustrates his attempt to move away from self-interestedness, toward what he calls negative capability:
When artisans and other interested men in the 1760s and 1770s defended their self-interestedness and claimed that they and their marketplace interests had a right to be personally involved in government, they were in effect demanding to be judges in their own causes; they were insisting that party or faction be made a legitimate participant in government.
Applying reason to nature in a systematic, scientific way revealed hitherto unsuspected mechanisms, some real, like gravity and evolution, and some imagined, like the implacable necessities of history, the immutable dynamics of the market and its invisible hand, and the incorrigible self-interestedness, competitiveness and general viciousness of the human race.
Taking a synoptic view, it is clear that according to Smith, Sen and Foucault, self-interestedness is the key skill necessary for the flourishing of capitalist individuality.
Given an ideological climate that Stefan Collini has aptly characterized as a "culture of altruism," in which only unself-interested actions and motives were held to be morally justifiable, advocates of the professions sought to explain their own professionalization in terms of public service while fending off often satirical criticism of their alleged self-interestedness.
While sometimes willful and defiant and sometimes passive to the point of self-extinction (Socrates did not protest his punishment), the heroes of civil disobedience believed in the need to obey a higher authority and to be cleansed of self-interestedness.
Nester, won over by their local knowledge, is perhaps overly indulgent of their self-interestedness.