Disqus Doodlings - no, capitalism REQUIRES cooperation - LOTS of it Part 1 of ?? - Granite Grok

Disqus Doodlings – no, capitalism REQUIRES cooperation – LOTS of it Part 1 of ??

Once again, trolling for material and doing so at probably one of the better sites at which to do it: Treehugger, that special brand that combines both “sustainable environmentalism” and socialism.  This time, an article on how Albert Einstein hated Capitalism. It starts off with the senseless nod to the Noble Savage concoction and then the “idyllic” nature of the agrarian society:

“The individual has become more conscious than ever of his dependence upon society. But he does not experience this dependence as a positive asset, as an organic tie, as a protective force, but rather as a threat to his natural rights, or even to his economic existence,” Einstein said. “The economic anarchy of capitalist society as it exists today is, in my opinion, the real source of the evil.”

Yeah, planned economies have worked out so very well.  The problem that while he was a genius in his fields of math and physics and to which there is no doubt, it is rare that such a savant’s capabilities transfer as well to other areas – in Einstein’s case, economic theory and politics.  The post descends from there as the writer adds more poop to the pile:

Humans naturally both compete and cooperate with each other. But capitalism encourages competition and discourages cooperation, breaking social bonds.

Yeah, not so much on that cooperation thingie.  Of course, I had to leave a dropping of my own (still waiting to be published as they, like us, moderate comments):

UPDATE: glad I saved off that entire post and put my response here – it was deleted.  Am trying again over there.

“Humans naturally both compete and cooperate with each other. But capitalism encourages competition and discourages cooperation, breaking social bonds”
Yes, capitalism encourages competition – that is not under dispute. I will take issue with the “discourages cooperation” part of your premise – capitalism REQUIRES cooperation – massive amounts of it. Consider the quintessential example “I, Pencil”. How many of you could actually produce a single pencil? How about a small group of TreeHuggers doing so? I know I couldn’t do all of the planning, obtaining and production tasks to create even one ordinary, dreary looking, pencil. And even if all of the Groksters (the writers at GraniteGrok, most of us being engineers) tried, we couldn’t do it either. Take a look at the go to paragraph and then think of all of materials, the shaping, the assembly, the tooling, the mining, the energy needed, to create a single pencil: https://fee.org/resources/i…
‘While “I, Pencil” shoots down the baseless expectations for central planning, it provides a supremely uplifting perspective of the individual. Guided by Adam Smith’s “invisible hand” of prices, property, profits, and incentives, free people accomplish economic miracles of which socialist theoreticians can only dream. As the interests of countless individuals from around the world converge to produce pencils without a single “master mind,” so do they also come together in free markets to feed, clothe, house, educate, and entertain hundreds of millions of people at ever higher levels. With great pride, FEE publishes this new edition of “I, Pencil.” Someday there will be a centennial edition, maybe even a millennial one. This essay is truly one for the ages.’
There is a massive amount of cooperation that is needed to make a pencil – and capitalism does that. Look at all of the things you own and start to think it through – how many companies, how many people, how much capital, did it take to make all that? I’ve worked in manufacturing for a couple of decades – it still amazes me that people that I don’t know, in some far off country, made a part specifically for me, that I needed to make my product. Never met them, never talked to them – but they knew that the marketplace would use it. And I did.
So the premise that capitalism discourages cooperation is utterly false – the cooperation is done in ways most people don’t realize unless they truly think about it. Now really ramp it up in making an EV car – THAT’S voluntary cooperation on a more massive scale!

I guess it is all about the simplest awareness of what it takes to make something, especially ranging from something that appears to be mundane like a pencil to a Boeing 777 or a supercomputer.  I guess it is the nature of today’s world that most people take a lot of stuff for granted and never give much thought as to how some object in their house came to be.  Even the computer, tablet, or phone on which you are reading this post is really a marvel of our age – a few years or decades ago, they were inconceivable other than in the annals of science fiction.

Fiction no longer – we built that, capitalism built that (with no apologies to Senator Elizabeth “Fauxcahauntus no more!” Warren).