• Michael Caney

Why Capitalism?

You're walking into LuluLemon. You see a shirt that you like. You read the price tag and it shows one-hundred fifteen dollars. You ask the question, Why is this shirt so expensive for a small, cheap, nylon logo? Second of all, why am I willing to invest so much money for something this expensive?" Ladies and gentlemen, that is because of capitalism. That shirt you are wearing is because of Capitalism. That over-priced, limited edition, energy drink you are drinking, well, that is possibly justified by Capitalism. What is capitalism, you may ask? Capitalism represents: an economic and political system in which a country's trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.

For the left to advocate and defend socialism or similar economic systems is profoundly foolish and dull-witted. Thanks to capitalism, you live in an immaculate house. You attend a remarkable school that is willing to adjust tuition if you do not obtain a fortunate income. In a socialist country, this does not exist. While our country could benefit from a reduction of relative property, capitalism disciplines us to work for our things. No human should give up because they claim a job is extremely challenging to acquire. If you are living on the streets, don't expect to receive a high pay, six-figure a year job. You have to work your way up the totem pole. Capitalism allows us to perform our way up. You can go from absolutely nothing to being a millionaire. Although societies with equitable opportunities and limited inequality are more likely to be cohesive, everyone would end up controlling and combusting.

In a perfect world, socialism would work. Unfortunately, we don't live in a perfect world. Why can’t we become a socialist government? Modern-day socialism considers a strong Marxist approach. Absolute government. Everyone is equal (same salary, same housing). We would receive no benefits from the free market. In fact, a free market would not exist. British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher long ago said, "The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people's money." This informs us that while government subsidies sound appealing, someone, however, has to pay the bills. An individual must learn to take care of themselves. Governments have been incapable of handling money and waste so far, so why burden them with more?

Imagine an elderly widow by your side. She doesn't have the power to trim her lawn, and she doesn't have the money to hire someone. My question to you: Do you support a government contract that forces one of your neighbors to trim a woman's lawn every week? If not, will you tolerate any form of punishment, from house arrest to fines to jail time? The average American would condemn such a government order. It is a form of slavery, where one person is violently exploited to serve another. This is exactly what socialism is! If the government did not force your neighbor to physically trim the widow's lawn, but forced her to give $40 of her weekly income, would there be the same accusations? You can hire someone to trim your own lawn. The mechanisms of delegation vary, but nevertheless it is the violent use of one person for another (Walter).

Capitalism isn't an excellent economic system. It contains its flaws. Inherited wealth and also wealth inequality a capitalist society is based on legitimate rights to private property and is capable of passing on wealth to generations. Capitalists claim that capitalist societies are only rewarded for their efforts. But often people become prosperous simply because they inherited wealth or were born into a privileged class. Consequently, a capitalist society cannot guarantee equality of outcome and equality of opportunity. Mentioned, there was an argument that stated a human could work their way up the totem pole. Although you can't guarantee equality of outcome, it is highly achievable to complete that task. As mentioned, that is not the only negativity about capitalism. Your social security is being ignored. An unfettered market overlooks external factors. Profit-maximizing capitalist firms are more likely to ignore negative externalities, such as pollution from production. This can be detrimental to your standard of living. Similarly, a free-market economy will under-produce goods with positive externalities, such as health care, public transport, and education. This leads to inefficient allocation of resources. Even proponents of capitalism recognize that in order to maximize the potential of a capitalist society, it is necessary for the state to provide certain local goods and services. Capitalism also means higher unemployment rates during recessions. In fact, in a capitalist system, it is considerably easier for companies to fire people because, in economic downturns, the restrictions on firing workers will be quite limited. An increase in the number of unemployed, therefore, means an increase in the number of vagrant people on the streets because there will be no more people who can no longer pay for habitation, nourishment or transportation.

So, if unemployment rates are rapidly falling, why do we not reject mass production instead of having a set amount of distribution with no change? Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, clearly identifies that without our economic system, we cannot produce goods and services humans are interested in purchasing. He gives an example of a pen factory: "So these ten men could make more than 48,000 pins in one day. So a person who makes 48,000 tenths of a pin can be considered as making 4,800 pins in a day. But if they all worked individually and independently, and none of them had been trained in this unique business, each of them, of course, could not earn twenty, maybe even one pin a day. That is, not even 1 in 240, perhaps even 1 in 4,800, of what they can now achieve due to the proper division and combination of the various tasks…" (Smith). This states that without free-market capitalism, supply and demand, and mass production, companies could, however, go bank-rupt. The demand is high and the supply is low. This can relate to our modern day crisis during COVID. Local, hustling companies were doing amazing. People realized that the government had found a loophole in which they offered checks in exchange for not working. Such behavior puts the company under great stress and leaves it hopeless. That is clear on how Socialism is modern day Marxism! Socialism and Marxism are essentially economic philosophies that privilege public ownership over private property, especially with respect to means of production, distribution and exchange of goods.

So, why capitalism? Do you enjoy your life? Do you wake up in the morning in a well regulated, pleasant room? Does your father drive a gratifying vehicle and perk you with appurtenances that aren't necessities whatsoever? Thank capitalism.

Works Cited

Arnold, Samuel. https://iep.utm.edu/socialis/.

Smith, Adam. The Wealth of Nations. Scotland, Great Britian, Adam Smith, 1776.

Walter, William E. “Evil Concealed By Money.” Townhall, https://townhall.com/columnists/walterewilliams/2008/11/19/evil_concealed_by_money-n1025884. Accessed 14 November 2022.

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