Whatever is left of capitalism usually suffers some sort of pollution by governmental bodies. Yet, this quasi-capitalism is blamed for most of the world’s ills. Governments are rarely called to account. From Max Borders at aier.org:
Capitalism is the extraordinary belief that the nastiest of men, for the nastiest of reasons, will somehow work for the benefit of us all. – John Maynard Keynes
An economic crisis looms. When the brown matter hits the proverbial fan, the blue-check commentariat will blame “capitalism.” So we have to remain vigilant.
In fact, they’ve already started.
I use scare quotes because so few clearly define what “capitalism” is, and fewer still know how it works. Particularly when they use the F word.
As with neoliberalism, “capitalism” is more or less a smear used by those who hate that which they neither understand nor have a hand in creating. Ignorance as a rhetorical strategy works mainly because the masses have become more credulous and ignorant with each passing year. Critics simply have to indicate some socio-economic phenomenon they don’t like and blame the c-word.
Capitalism is the economic system of free people, which means the U.S. has not had capitalism for a long time. Nonetheless, those who want to tear down the present system persist in calling it capitalism. From Jeff Thomas at internationalman.com:
Recently, an American colleague commented to me, “We no longer live in a democracy but a dictatorship disguised as a democracy.”
Is he correct? Well, a dictatorship may be defined as “a form of government in which absolute authority is exercised by a dictator.”
The US today is not be ruled by dictatorship (although, to some, it may well feel that way.)
But, if that’s the case, what form of rule does exist in the US?
At its formation, the founding fathers argued over whether the United States should be a republic or a democracy. Those founders who later formed the Federalist Party felt that it should be a democracy – rule by representatives elected by the people. Thomas Jefferson, who created the Democratic Republican Party, argued that it should be a republic – a state in which the method of governance is democracy, but the principle of governance is that the rights of the individual are paramount.