Clean Government: Does Capitalism Qualify?
“It is the duty of the patriot to protect his country from its government.” —Thomas Paine
What do we want from our government? First of all, a safe, secure environment; a sound base from which we can build and grow. We imagine an army that runs to our defense and noble individuals dealing with foreign officials to protect us and guarantee fairness between nations. But often, we straddle the dilemma of assuring government effectiveness versus suffering government interference. The expected result is peace and stability; our pleasant contemplation of never-ending tomorrows, enjoying today and looking forward to every step we take along the path of our lives. What do our freedom and stability depend on?
The birth of our country was the birth of an idea of how men were to engage each other—for once having the courage not to cannibalize. No two philosophies are more desperately needed or are more intentionally subverted than morality and economics (and the subversion of the first makes the subversion of the second possible). A proper code of ethics focuses on the entity it protects: the individual. Sound economics focuses on the proper interrelation of individuals (not sociology, democracy, Communism, or any governmental body, as is often taught). Capitalism simply stands for the right of an individual citizen to make his own economic decisions—to use his own judgment in deciding what to offer, what to buy, and who to trade with. Any other system denies him these rights (and the use of cognition), tells him what he needs, and forces him to accept it.
Why Socialism could gain acceptance by totally violating the natural requirements of the entity it governed isn’t unfathomable anymore, but it is certainly unforgivable. Self-made man would say, “Under capitalism, I can work as hard as I want and keep the results? Awesome!” While Fear-driven man would say, “Under socialism, whether I work or not, I get a cut of what others make? Awesome!” Capitalism rewards the best foot anyone puts forward. Socialism declares that society as a whole should own everything to assure equalitarian distribution, without addressing the equality of effort. They attempt to sustain the unproductive by harnessing the productive, but the good of others, or the “public good,” can never violate the good of an individual. The individual is the measure. Look at Marxist dogma and you won’t see any complex or carefully deliberated laws, but only threats and reproaches—the result of an uneducated and undisciplined consciousness looking to defy itself. At this time in history, you will see socialists decrying the failure of capitalism as a confirmation of their own agenda, but it is not capitalism that has failed. Capitalism in its purest form is called laissez-faire, meaning unregulated free-enterprise. But morally speaking, “without government regulation” does not mean without standards. Industries are expected to self-regulate and guarantee quality in graduated levels. High standards were thought to be the natural result of competition, but with a heavily-indebted populace, the cheapest product that promises more than it can deliver wins, bringing us right back to “slick-salesman and sucker” cannibalism. Capitalism is a sound institutional structure and has not failed us. Fraud on an enormous scale is what failed us; fraud in the financial markets and a mutated business culture of executive embezzlement—men who strip the lifeblood out of companies in defiance of their proper operation. These men are NOT the Self-made, and deserve no moral protection in his name. They are world-robbing pirates deserving time and restitution.
That you can find a job that matches your own interests, that both you and your employer have a choice in the matter of arrangements and that you work steadily to receive a regular paycheck, the world has a political label for you: Capitalist, and a corresponding hate group. But in fact, capitalism is the only socioeconomic system that completes the pattern of life, respecting Man’s nature and securing the land for his potential stature. It leaves him free to choose his own loyalties, free to test his adult capacities, and to do it all alone, without the fear of being devoured. To answer the age-old question fought over since the Cold War, “Who is going to build a better world?” That’s right, the builders.