Punchinello’s Chronicles

January 15, 2009

What’s Wrong with Capitalism

Filed under: Foolish Rants — Punchinello @ 10:03 pm
Tags: , ,

Nothing is wrong with capitalism! What’s wrong is the general comprehension of the word! But to hear people in talk radio, news stories, and pundits everywhere on the airwaves, capitalism has been “proven” to be a failed system. Utter nonsense! And even hogwash!

The problem isn’t capitalism. It’s a failed understanding of the meaning of capitalism. It’s the failed educational system, intentional or otherwise, that’s taught generations of Americans that capitalism is synonymous with profit-making. What’s wrong here is the comprehension of capitalism. The crime and tragedy is that of everyone in history, Americans should be totally knowledgeable on the subject!

We hear stories of greed and corruption, especially in the government and the banking institutions. Then, immediately after these stories we hear that this is proof that capitalism doesn’t work. Uncontrolled, “free market” capitalism leads to uncontrolled, unmanaged profits and that’s the proof we’re given.

We then hear stories about people such as Bernard Madoff, con-man, thief, crook, and overall bad guy. He brought back the ever-popular Ponzi scheme (pyramid scheme), bilking greedy investors out of $50 billion! That’s “billion” with a “B.”

And there we go again, with the greed. It was investors who believed they could get rich quick. They could get a return far beyond normal, far beyond what ordinary people were getting. They drooled and danced, handing over hundreds of millions of dollars to the man who would defy economic principles. It was too good to be true, therefore it must have been true!

That’s what people point to when they say capitalism has failed!

We see the governor of Illinois trying to sell a Senate seat. Does he own it? Did he create it from his own efforts? Did he invest one iota of functional work toward making that seat? No. To Gov. Blagojevich, the United States Constitution is meaningless. He believes that anyone can buy or sell anything, regardless of whether anyone owns it. Property rights, to him and others like him, come down to “finder’s, keeper’s.”

Professors, educators, pundits, and talking heads always tell us that capitalism is defined as making profits. They tell us that capitalism is the same as uncontrolled free markets. They tell us that capitalism is all about money, preferably the American dollar. No, it isn’t!

Capitalism is a moral system, defined by the right of the individual to own (with the capability to sell) the fruits of their own minds and their own efforts. A free market means that YOU, the individual are free to sell what you own. It means you have the right to buy what someone wants to sell.

As with all freedoms, they must be defended. They must be defined. They carry responsibilities along with each freedom. And they must be protected from abuse and interference. “Free” does NOT mean “do whatever the hell you feel like doing, whenever you want!”

That presupposes ANY kind of rational morality in a society, and presupposes that ANY person in that society actually has values. Pure and simple, capitalism means the right to private ownership of property. Economically, it means that one person can spend their own money to buy a share or all of a business. When they make that purchase, they own it. They can sell it again, or they can reap the rewards of selling what’s produced by that business!

Capitalism means a legal system that ensures contracts. It includes penalties for breaking contracts. This legal system also ensures the right to ownership of both “things” and intellectual efforts. We not only own the results of our own minds and efforts, we have the fundamental right to own those results. That’s what’s capitalism!

There isn’t anything whatsoever wrong with capitalism. It’s the single reason that the United States has become the most powerful nation in recorded history. To sustain the morality of ownership means to fundamentally ensure the freedom of the individual. Without that freedom, without the individual, there can’t be any individual ownership.

As America loses its moral compass, believing that morals are a matter of opinion, so too capitalism becomes less and less clear. As we seek to blame everyone except ourselves for our own problems, so too we look to a socialized government to fix everything. The less each of us produces, creates, builds, and invents, the less of anything private exists for anyone to own.

No, it’s the ongoing and never-ending attempts by politicians to control “the pie” that’s causing so much trouble. It’s the greed of people who manipulate the law to their own ends. It’s the perversion of a legal system into a litany of technical sophistry, where astounding criminal behavior escapes punishment of any kind. That’s what’s wrong with the economy today. Not capitalism.

But, playing on the stupidity of a population graduated from one of the worst educational systems in the world, politicians and pundits point to the problem itself and tell us it’s the solution. Based on the statement that freedom and capitalism are wrong and have brought us to this crisis, they demand more regulation. They demand less freedom, more laws, more technicalities, more control, and more confiscation of private property.

And that’s somehow going to solve the “problem” of capitalism. Do you believe it? If you do, then you probably voted for Mr. Obama. He’s your man. He’s your solution.

Advertisements

Leave a Comment »

No comments yet.

RSS feed for comments on this post. TrackBack URI

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

%d bloggers like this: