There is a tendency to paint things as either black or white, meanwhile around the world the Occupy Movement and the 99% struggle to define what the problem is. Clearly capitalism and free markets have their benefits, and have been around from the dawn of human time. Three arrow heads bartered for an animal skin – and everybody goes home happy and better off.
In this simple ‘perfect market’, it works, and works well. But in scaling up, things have not gone so well. As in the video referenced at the end of these comments, industrialization has changed things in a major way. From a hunter-gatherer society, to primarily an agrarian one, the coming of industrialization has since catapulted world nations and markets into something different. Actual necessities are produced by a few, materialism of non-essentials has run rampant, and the ability to find useful work has become extraordinarily problematic. Although the world markets produce more to buy, paradoxically there is struggle to find work that will suffice to purchase even basic necessities. Some (well off) politicians have brushed off the problem as ‘envy’, but increasingly those who had been living, or anticipating an average, middle-class lifestyle, are now be struggling to get basic food and shelter.
There are heated arguments about welfare, socialism, and the role of government in providing basic care needs for its citizens in crisis. The argument has been going toward the direction that those who are not succeeding are just not trying hard enough to embrace capitalism as the total solution and make it work for them. Capitalism, an economic system, has been championed as the solution to social needs by those who profit – or feel that economic failure is universally a personal one. We think this is either ignorance, or self-interest guided thinking.
We in Amerindia feel that capitalism is an economic system – not a moral, political, or social solution by itself. The only thing that is becoming a consistent in this long running discussion is that the problem started about 40 years ago. We had had industrialization before then, but that is when capitalism began to split from being stakeholder capitalism to an unfettered, unmonitored, desocialized shareholder capitalism. At the time it was justified as a ‘trickle down’ benefit, resources began to be ever more concentrated with the few and ironically, Not distributed more equitably, particularly among the workers. Jobs have been outsourced to the cheapest labor available world-wide, eliminated by mechanization, or workers have been cheated out of pay, pensions, or other compensations. The capitalism that has been deified, has become corrupt.
Unfortunately, as in this clip, we do not see a quick or easy solution. However, identifying the true nature of the problem is a start. Capitalism needs to return, or become, a socially responsible capitalism.
The Queen of Amerindia