01 May Why Capitalism is Crucial to your Child’s Future
No doubt you’ve heard the recent debates over capitalism. It is the American way and has been since its inception. Recently, however, many speak of capitalism in disparaging terms; that it is somehow unfair, that it promotes greed and robs the very worker that propelled certain businesses to success. It is so frustrating to hear the uneducated or uninformed spew false information about the American economic system. It drives me nuts to hear people put down the virtues of capitalism and praise socialism as if that’s a new concept that will save us all. Ironic that the proponents of socialism and communism never call it that. They water it down with terms such as “social justice”.
Those terms fortunately still have a negative connotation, but if it looks like a duck, and walks like a duck…. Well, I’ll let you decide. Anyone who knows anything about history of ANY civilization knows that socialism, communism, and anything like unto, has failed miserably every time. So what’s the difference between capitalism and socialism? What are your children learning? Why should you care? What should you be teaching them? Do you know the difference? Here are some facts about each and what has made America the greatest nation on earth. Socialism: a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.
In other words, life should be fair. Everyone should have access to the exact same thing. This, of course is ridiculous. Otherwise I would be a famous rock star. It’s so unfair that some have that incredible talent and I don’t. They should spread the wealth. Or better yet, I should contact my state senator to push legislation that everyone should share their rock stardom with me! Sounds stupid doesn’t it? Could I have pursued a signing career? Absolutely! But I’m smart enough to know that that would have been a waste of time. I don’t have a great voice. More importantly, I had no desire to humiliate my family. People succeed because of natural ability, perseverance and hard work, in any area of life. And guess what else? People fail! Often! They should be allowed to fail; to then pick themselves up and try again. The key is they don’t quit. That is truly the American way.
Though our Declaration of Independence declares that, “all men are created equal” we were never guaranteed equal results even though America has the largest population of wealthy people in the history of the world. Because of capitalism, more people have risen from squalor than with any other system. Where else in the world can a school teacher, never making more than $50k, invest a small part of her income and compound it into a fortune? Is that fair? You bet! More power to her! I hope she makes an obscene amount of money!
Who is Wealthy?
But what’s wealthy? Get this. According to Dave Ramsey, If you make $34,000 a year, you are part of the wealthy 1% of the entire world. If you make $11,000 per year, you’re part of 14% of top earners worldwide. So you may just be part of the evil rich that is so popular to boo and hiss at lately. When and how did it become fashionable to criticize and look down on success? Though America has long been “the land of opportunity” for millions, that gateway to success is being threatened daily. Just this week, Capitol Hill Daily reported that the middle class is quickly vanishing because of exorbitant taxes, government regulation and even job loss. American wealth has diminished 28% over the past six years alone! According to the New York Times on March 14, 2014 children can expect to make much less than their parents did. I contend that this is by design because of socialist principles attempting to “level the playing field” and make us all equal. Unintended consequences? We’re all miserable together.
Think Washington, Jefferson and Lincoln, etc are rolling around in their graves wondering what in the world we’re doing? Our forefathers fought long and hard for our freedoms. A large majority of US citizens have known nothing but enormous prosperity because of our forefathers’ blood, sweat, and tears. They intensely studied the charters and constitutions of other governments to craft what has been the greatest lasting document to ever govern man. The US Constitution.
As they poured over and debated issues in the sweltering heat of Philadelphia in 1776, they relied on several books for inspiration; the main one being the bible. Yup! Turns out that we truly are a nation based on Judeo-Christian values. Regardless if you believe in the values from the bible or not, you are still a beneficiary of those principles. Like honesty, service, and compassion. Service, or serving is the core of capitalism when it’s done properly which sadly is not newsworthy when it’s done well. No one ever hears about the small kindnesses and excellent services rendered by a small business. But word of mouth propels people and businesses like no other form of advertising. That’s how the free market works.
Unfortunately, free market capitalism only truly works if individuals have good character and can govern themselves. If not, it leads to more and more of a police state where freedoms are eroded. I contend that what has soiled capitalism is individual greed and dishonesty. It’s the individual that ruins capitalism, not capitalism itself. The beauty about the free market is that if you do business with someone who is dishonest, and word gets around, and the free market beats that guy right out of business. Whereas in socialism, it’s hard to get rid of liars and cheaters because it’s government who picks winners and losers instead of judging by one’s character. Instead of allowing free market principles to take their natural course, government, or those few in charge, force a decision or an outcome. Perfect examples? The GM bailout, several solar companies such as Solyndra, and other “shovel ready” jobs that were financial disasters for American taxpayers.
Milton Friedman once said that, “Nobody spends somebody else’s money as carefully as he spends his own.” Socialism benefits the few at the expense of many. As stated by Winston Churchill, “The inherent virtue of socialism is the equal sharing of miseries.” The truth is NO ONE is “too big to fail”. If you’re doing a terrible job, you deserve to fail. Period. When you think about it, it’s pretty arrogant to think you can force and manipulate people and markets to behave the way you think they should, which is exactly what socialism and communism do because ends are accomplished through force. And the really horrible result generally brings death and destruction for millions because it turns out that human beings don’t like to be forced. (I know…. News flash!)
Do Your Homework
Do your own homework on any society that has tried either of these failed economic models! Both must be led by dictators slowly chipping away at your freedom of choice which in turn stifles creativity and produces a whole lot of mediocrity. Don’t believe me? Look at the difference in American ingenuity in the last 100 years. Capitalism encourages entrepreneurship, where socialism discourages it. The inventions of the industrial revolution could never be successful today simply because of the ridiculous government regulation imposed on every facet of business. What incredible inventions have you seen in America lately? I contend that Edison, Ford, and even Steve Jobs would have a heck of a time doing what they did in this stifling climate. Look at the business climate in San Francisco, Los Angeles, New York, New Jersey, Chicago, Detroit, etc. Liberal and socialist principles have crippled these beautiful cities into decay but the free market always takes over and wins. Heavily taxed and regulated business simply pack up and move to more business-friendly states such as Texas and Wyoming. Just this week, Toyota which was based in Los Angeles announced their relocation to Plano,Texas. I rest my capitalistic case.
So next time Junior comes home from school and starts in about the unfairness of America, or the evils of capitalism, make him/her do some basic research to discover the truth. Should take all of ten minutes. Get on your knees and be grateful to live in the only country on earth that still affords every opportunity to succeed with one caveat: you have to work for it. Don’t settle for mediocrity! We’re better than that! Your parents and grandparents wished and worked hard for you to be excellent! Only through capitalism will that happen. So America! Look for me on the next season of “The Voice.” Hey… It could happen. God bless America!