AEIdeas

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Discussion: (11 comments)

  1. Che is dead

    “Well, capitalism did nothing for me… The system is not set up to help somebody from the working class make a movie like this and get the truth out there.” — Michael Moore, filmmaker of working class origin. Estimated fortune: $50,000,000.

    “In short, our top pundits, our political elites, our very president all believe that they can blast the unfairness of high capitalism while doing everything in their power to enjoy its dividends — and demand an ethical standard from others that they habitually do not meet themselves. It is as if the more left-wing one sounds, the more anti-left-wing his tastes; the more the ethicist lectures on morality, the more he is likely to be unethical; the more green an advocate, the less likely the 800-square foot cottage replete with recycled water, a solar toilet, and 70-degree hot water. The only mystery here is whether there is some sort of logical connection. Does the profession of cosmic morality by design allow one to enjoy without guilt quite earthly sins?” — Victor Davis Hanson

    “It’s a stark illustration of the inequities of capitalism that organized labor can only afford to buy one political party, but Wall Street can buy both of them.” – Mickey Kaus

    1. That is an excellent quote from Michael Moore. It is a perfect demonstration that he, like most on the left, have no understanding of what capitalism is, how they benefit from it, nor of their wanton destructive impulses towards those who make people’s lives better.

      Mickey Kaus’s is no better. I really don’t understand his support of unions, as he, better than most, has detailed their cruelty towards union members, and their staggering corruption.

      1. Perhaps they understand only too well that there’s a good living to be made in biting the hand that feeds them.

        Victor Davis Hanson suggests as much.

  2. Che is dead

    “Capitalism tends to open society, socialism to close it. There is no reason to wonder why those who lust for power are drawn to the left; or why the left has been consistently “chic” among the intellectuals, continuously for much more than a century. Socialism may impoverish and enslave, but it is the means by which the intellectual can hope to become the enslaver: through the creation of bureaucracies to advance and perpetuate fashionable progressive agendas.” — David Warren

    “A man who chooses between drinking a glass of milk and a glass of a solution of potassium cyanide does not choose between two beverages; he chooses between life and death. A society that chooses between capitalism and socialism does not choose between two social systems; it chooses between social cooperation and the disintegration of society. Socialism is not an alternative to capitalism; it is an alternative to any system under which men can live as human beings.” — Ludwig von Mises writing in “Human Action”

    “In history, the battles against central powers were fought on different fronts and, in the future, they will be fought on new fronts that have not been concocted yet in the Gramscian and Alinskian laboratories. It will never end. If Stalin’s holocausts didn’t end it, if the fall of the Berlin Wall didn’t end it, if the evidence of Cuba and North Korea didn’t end it, if Pol Pot didn’t end it, if the turn of China and Russia to Capitalism didn’t end it, if the countless failures of centralized control economies didn’t end it, if the attempts to turn Euroland back to free markets and greater freedom didn’t end it, if the pathetic return of Euroland to an imperial EU doesn’t end it, if the countless failures of hugely-expensive but failed yet immortal government programs didn’t end it, then nothing will ever end this battle.” — “Bird Dog”, Maggies Farm

  3. Che is dead

    “The impulse to acquisition, pursuit of gain, of money, of the greatest possible amount of money, has in itself nothing to do with capitalism, unlimited greed for gain is not in the least identical with capitalism, and still less its spirit. [Capitalism] is the pursuit of profit, and forever renewed profit, by means of continuous, rational . . . enterprise.” — Max Weber, The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism.

    “The inherent vice of capitalism is the unequal sharing of blessings; the inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of misery.” — Winston Churchill

    “Free market capitalism is relatively new in human history. Prior to the rise of capitalism, the way people amassed great wealth was by looting, plundering and enslaving their fellow man. Capitalism made it possible to become wealthy by serving one’s fellow man. Capitalists seek to discover what people want and then produce it as efficiently as possible. Free market capitalism is ruthless in its profit and loss discipline. This explains much of the hostility toward free market capitalism; some of it is held by businessmen. Smith recognized this hostility when he said, “People of the same trade seldom meet together, even for merriment and diversion, but the conversation ends in a conspiracy against the public, or in some contrivance to raise prices.” He was hinting at government-backed crony capitalism, which has come to characterize much of today’s businesses.

    Free market capitalism has other enemies — mostly among the intellectual elite and political tyrants. These are people who believe that they have superior wisdom to the masses and that God has ordained them to forcibly impose that wisdom on the rest of us. Of course, they have what they consider to be good reasons for restricting liberty, but every tyrant who has ever lived has had what he considered good reason for restricting liberty. A tyrant’s agenda calls for the attenuation or the elimination of the market and what is implied by it — voluntary exchange. Tyrants do not trust that people acting voluntarily will do what the tyrant thinks they should do. They want to replace the market with economic planning and regulation.”

    – Walter Williams

  4. Jon Murphy

    YES YES YES!

    All too often, the opponents of capitalism focus on just one thing: profit. But capitalism is about profit and loss. Profit directs more resources towards a desired service, product, or goal. Loss directs resources away.

    Folks like to point to companies or markets that fail and say “see? Capitalism fails.” I say, “feature, not a bug.”

    Unlike centrally planned economic systems, capitalism does’t need to be perfect to work. In fact, those imperfections enhance it.

    1. morganovich

      belief in economic progress without failure is like belief in evolution without natural selection, a basic impossibility.

      1. Nice parallel there morganovich

  5. For a deeper analysis, I recommend Nassim Taleb’s new book – Antifragility. Small failures make many nature systems stronger.

    1. Jon Murphy

      Taleb is a great author, no?

      1. Great interview here thanks to Reason, almost an hour in length: Nassim Taleb Talks Antifragile, Libertarianism, and Capitalism’s Genius for Failure

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