Notable Quote - Capitalism Hasn’t Been “Unfettered” for Decades; Perhaps We Should Try It? - Granite Grok

Notable Quote – Capitalism Hasn’t Been “Unfettered” for Decades; Perhaps We Should Try It?


Once capitalism is seen as a profit-and-loss system, with everyone at the mercy of the sovereign consumer’s whims as he balances one marginal desire against another, the incidence of anticapitalistic criticism must shift. The capitalist who can make money in a consumer-oriented system is the one who shrewdly anticipates the customer’s desires, and under such a dispensation profit – far from being “surplus value” – becomes the deserved reward for acumen.

-John Chamberlain (The Roots of Capitalism)

Progressivism rose during the early Industrial Age, in part as a legitimate pushback of bad workplace environments. And to plagiarize Lenin, the other was simply Socialism seeing a Power opportunity laying in the street, and picked it up. As early American Socialists took root in American governance, they decided that Government WAS going to be a “partner” with the private sector – like it or not. In doing so, it also became judge, jury, and executioner by those in Government that either wished to push THEIR special interests – or were seeking revenge.

No matter what, however, I believe it has had the effect of pushing aside the main driver of capitalism – the voluntary choices by consumers. While Chamberlain is exactly right in that an entrepreneur must be able to innovate, adapt, and overcome in meeting consumers’ needs, most often a lot of their emphasis must be in satisfying the biggest elephant in the room – the myriad (and often overwhelming, and often contradictory) sets and subsets of laws and regulations.

And in the end, isn’t a purchaser at all.  Hard enough to satisfy actual customers – Government is becoming a bigger burden than consumers’ demands.

(H/T: Cafe Hayek)