Most of us are locked into Capitalism. We seem to have no choice about the matter. Good things do come out of Capitalism. The economic circulation fostered by Capitalism benefits many people. Yet, there is a real issues with Capitalism as practiced today. They became much clearer when I read Ozgur Zeren’s answer on Quora regarding, “What are some arguments against modern American capitalism?”
The greatest harm of Capitalism that I can perceive is not harm to individuals, but society. Certain individuals can thrive under Capitalism, and many others can do okay. When you are doing well under Capitalism, you will probably never question it. You may even say “hey, it works”. Regardless of your situation in life, if you look at Capitalism from a broader view, it is a disaster.
The problems exist in several areas:
- Resources are governed through this economic system and skewed in their production and delivery.
- Economics overshadows the political with a corresponding loss of freedom.
- The free market encourages a less free market by decreasing the number of suppliers in a given area.
- Consolidation of power by those with the most cash means more people will be poor and struggling.
It seems that all systems benefit from a good set of constraints. Capitalism cannot be a system, created by people, that is exempt from solid constraints. Capitalism even seems like it has no constraints at all. The most fervent advocates of this system appreciate this lack of constraint as the most profound feature. The ability to do anything you want, anyway you want is not true freedom when everyone else does not have that freedom.
I believe there should be a cap on compensation, there should be a cap on profits, and that there should be a more balanced system so that more people can participate to the extent we continue to have Capitalism. Otherwise, part of the strife seen in the world will be cultivated, in part, by a system that needs serious reform.
Ozgur Zeren’s thoughts make for good reading. He has given a clear summary of where Capitalism has led. I thank him for his analysis and hope others learn from it as well.