10.01.2008 0

Capitalism is Based on Liberty, Not Central-Planning

  • On: 10/23/2008 17:03:52
  • In: Government Transparency
  • By Isaac MacMillen and Robert Romano

    With the current financial mess embroiling the American banking industry, some media commentators are gleefully declaring the end of capitalism as we know it.

    Eugene Robinson, in his Washington Post column “Feds, Wall Street bring end to capitalism,” opined that the “uber-capitalists of Wall Street are all socialists now.”

    Harold Myerson, also of the Washington Post, declared that, in light of the current situation, “conservative intellectuals might want to consider writing a tome on the failure of their own beloved deity, unregulated capitalism.”

    Even international figures, such as Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, or Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad proclaimed the “failure of extreme capitalism” and the “end of capitalism,” respectively.

    But for all their gloating, they fail to realize one simple fact: Capitalism isn’t a system with a centralized agency or wise man that controls it, or plans its outcomes. Capitalism operates on its own as the culmination of individual initiative; it does not require an institution or government agency to run it. It does not have a series of principles that must be enacted in order for it to “occur.” It is not based on some abstract central plan.

    On the contrary, capitalism is based on the absence of such a system; where independent individuals exercise their freedom to make personally beneficial economic decisions. The only way to dispense of capitalism is to do away with personal liberty.

    Furthermore, as Senator Jim DeMint (R-SC) recently pointed out, the problem “was not created by our free enterprise system. It was created by us, the Congress and the Federal Government.”

    Declaring the free market “dead” and asking the federal government to fix it is the equivalent of giving a drunk driver the keys to the tow truck so he can tow away the auto that he totaled.

    Politicians in Washington and reporters in New York need to realize that capitalism is far from dead. The only thing that died this year is the fantasy that government intervention can occur in the free markets—devoid of negative consequences.

    But it might be a long time before you read that in the news—the pundits are too busy tossing confetti to type up the story.

    Isaac MacMillen is a contributing editor of ALG News Bureau.

    Robert Romano is the Editor of ALG News Bureau.

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