By Allen Coleman
Capitalism in America is said to be founded on a free market, low government interference, and conscious leadership. These are what makes capitalism successful, but centuries later how has that turned out? It’s actually a system of slavery and poverty.
Firstly, the free market might offer things like individual rights to consumerism and innovation. The consumer can buy certain products and due to supply and demand, if we aren’t buying (supplies) certain products (demand) then that shows the corporations that we are not interested in said product. We have the right to buy what we want and with our money, we tell the big corporations that we do/do not support a product. This allows the consumer various options like if they rather buy a canned product or a plastic product, if they want the product corporation X sells or Y does, or if they can afford the said product.
The market has so many options for the same product, which is concerning because this runs up against innovation, a key concept of capitalism Innovation means new products hitting the market; as corporations compete to buy products that they sell, it is inhibited due to similar products hitting the shelf. Capitalism is halting growth, due to a lack of motivation to improve the dying market.
Secondly, low government interference, which is great for big corporations. The role of government is to improve the lives of its citizens and improve the well-being of society. They’re good things about it like general safety, freedom, and welfare. It’s their job to protect us and have our best interest at heart, as they work for us through taxes. The people we elect in our government act as our voice, they are supposed to use that voice to stand up for the people, the workers, the individual. Those we trust to lead a nation of tomorrow that is better than it was before.
However, that government is corrupted and bought out by the capitalists. Our government doesn’t interfere with us while we continue to work for low wages and increasing inflation. The working class works for these corporations, while they take advantage of us by not paying their fair share of taxes. The workers stay in a cycle of wage slavery and poverty, while our congress enjoys donations from lobbyists.
Furthermore, capitalism only works with conscious leadership. That conscious leadership comes from the workers, who support big corporations/governments through our work/taxes. The government no longer represents us, but instead represents an oligarchy that big corporations rule over. We are no longer a true democracy; where the individual is represented.
All things considered, democracy is the key. We the people have a basic right to vote and with that, the working class can stand up against corruption and greed. We can free the shackles of capitalism and unite together for a common good; to better each other. It’s time we grab the key and free ourselves.
Desmond, Matthew. “American Capitalism Is Brutal. You Can Trace That to the Plantation.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 14 Aug. 2019, www.nytimes.com/interactive/2019/08/14/magazine/slavery-capitalism.html.
SARWAT JAHAN is a senior economist in the IMF’s Asia and Pacific Department., and AHMED SABER MAHMUD is associate director of the Applied Economics Program at Johns Hopkins University. “What Is Capitalism?” IMF, 10 May 2018, www.imf.org/en/Publications/fandd/issues/Series/Back-to-Basics/Capitalism#:~:text=Pillar s%20of%20capitalism.
Solow, Barbara Lewis. “Capitalism and slavery in the exceedingly long run.” British Capitalism and Caribbean Slavery, 1988, pp. 51–78, Capitalism and Slavery in the Exceedingly Long Run – British Capitalism and Caribbean Slavery (cambridge.org)
Allen Coleman is a member of Kansas City, Kansas SDUSA.