Defend capitalism

This seemed like the best place for my research project; we are debating which economic theories is least exploitative and hierarchal (I am particularly interested in this- if you believe in hierarchies why?) 

Not asking for a detailed analysis of capitalism, just what makes you, people who uphold its framework, think it to be the right system.

Im not a communist, so I won't be biased, and I also want to pursue a career in banking so no Marcxist tendencies here lol. Just want educated opinions.

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Comments (30)

  • Analyst 1 in IB - Ind
Feb 18, 2021 - 7:18pm

You're fucked if you think "this" is the best place to conduct research

  • Business School in IB - Ind
Feb 18, 2021 - 7:19pm

Forums aren't really the best place to get these educated opinions. Maybe WSO is better than other places but in general the topic, comment, upvote/downvote system doesn't lend it itself to educated opinions.

I've said this before on another thread but it only takes 140 characters (or less) to write some weak ass clever zinger like "Oh yEaH iF caPitaLiSM is sO gReAt, then why XYZ inequity!???" And then if it's spicy enough it goes viral or has a ton of upvotes/likes.

On the other hand it usually takes an entire book to tell that person why they are wrong. Or an impressive understand of centuries of economic development and history. Nobody thinks the system is perfect but what history tells us is that it is better than many, if not all, alternatives that have been tried.

The harmful part is the "spicey" rhetoric is encouraged by social media (and used successfully by our political leaders) and this drives deconstructionist narratives that I think can be counter productive. Hopefully in the long run calculated improvements are made to the system resulting in continued prosperity, increased standards of living and freedom/opportunity.

  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Feb 18, 2021 - 7:31pm

Capitalism is clearly hierarchical, and possibly exploitative, but still the best option... In reality, we have a mixed economy, and that is probably the way to go. Mkts with regulation and safety net. IMO

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Feb 18, 2021 - 7:38pm

Define capitalism? Whenever people do "socialism vs. capitalism" debates, 9/10 it's completely fucking pointless because people don't even define them but instead go on some rants that doesn't mean jack shit. 

In one definition, Nordic countries are highly socialistic. In another, they are one of the best examples of free market capitalist systems. In many ways, they aren't even antithetical to each other.

US is another example. If you go by the shear size of the government in terms of government spending as percentage of the GDP, the US is a de facto socialist country. Even more so than China (US governments spends about 40% of its GDP vs. 35% for China! surprising ey?). Yet the US is so-called the "most capitalistic country in the world".

Feb 19, 2021 - 6:38am

Don't know if you're being sarcastic or not but this was a key argument that divided Russian revolutionaries: whether Marx's theories, which had been based on industrialized societies like 19th century Britain and Germany, could be applied to agrarian economies like Tsarist Russia. In other words, do we have to wait for capitalism to bake a pie to be redistributed, or can we bake one ourselves? 

Feb 18, 2021 - 8:58pm

Capitalism incentivizes people to innovate, create, produce and reap a much greater reward for their efforts. If the government is less capitalist and more of a welfare state, what is the incentive to even work if your basic needs are taken care of? This affects the overall GDP and growth of a country. 

Also, the Laffer curve depicts the disincentives to work with higher taxes. 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laffer_curve

"If you always put limits on everything you do, physical or anything else, it will spread into your work and into your life. There are no limits. There are only plateaus, and you must not stay there, you must go beyond them." - Bruce Lee

  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Feb 18, 2021 - 10:35pm

Attributing any value judgment to how hierarchical some system is makes no sense. Everything is hierarchical no matter how much a Bernie supporting CEO posts on LinkedIn about his startup.

Capitalism is not a system of government, but rather the only possible economic system that can be manifested in a society that respects the rights of the individual. Life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. In accord with these principles, capitalism is the only system that does not require taking from one to give to another deemed more deserving of property by a popularity contest (or mob rule). Allow people to own their own property, and they will engage in mutually beneficial trade. This gets more and more complex, where minimal market regulation makes sense because markets are only efficient in the long run - externalities are thus internalized and can be priced in. 

Feb 19, 2021 - 6:38am

Never debate with liberal retards. First they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

Never discuss with idiots, first they drag you at their level, then they beat you with experience.

  • 1
  • Prospect in IB - Gen
Feb 19, 2021 - 6:38am

You are politically illiterate. Liberals are capitalists...

Feb 19, 2021 - 6:38am

kinda like churchill said about democracy. capitalism isn't perfect but it's clearly the best option we have given the alternatives

in reality, it depends upon your priorities and what you value. if you value innovation and growth and potential income, capitalism makes sense. if you value stability, equality of outcome, and dislike the profit motive, then you may disagree. the trouble with these arguments is that we all have different priorities and everything sounds good when you only talk about the positive aspects of it.

for example, one of the best things about a free market economy is the ability to fail at business quickly and start again if you wish. in certain parts of LatAm, it can take 2-3 years to shut down a business, not exactly efficient, so those barriers are known and it stunts innovation and entrepreneurship. at the same time, bankruptcy and failure can be painful, so if your priority is pain avoidance (I disagree that you should prioritize this but whatever), then you wouldn't like capitalism. kinda like forest management. one of the best techniques that the ancients used to prevent wildfires is to allow deadwood to burn on a regular basis so new growth can happen. so it is in a true free market economy.

I like true capitalism from a business standpoint because in it's pure form it's meritocratic. sure some people are luckier than others, but you don't get successful purely by rubbing the right bureaucrats elbows, you compete and there are winners and losers. the downsides to this of course are externalities like polluting the environment, but I think you can have a system that avoids cronyism while still upholding free market principles. we don't have that in the USA that's for sure, but I'd love to see it tried.

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  • Anonymous Monkey
  • Rank: Chimp
Feb 19, 2021 - 6:38am

I like true capitalism from a business standpoint because in it's pure form it's meritocratic. sure some people are luckier than others, but you don't get successful purely by rubbing the right bureaucrats elbows, you compete and there are winners and losers. the downsides to this of course are externalities like polluting the environment, but I think you can have a system that avoids cronyism while still upholding free market principles. we don't have that in the USA that's for sure, but I'd love to see it tried.

This has to be satire, right? I'm no socialist and will defend capitalism from idiots on Twitter, but pretending capitalism is meritocratic in any way is fucking retarded. 

Feb 19, 2021 - 6:38am

I think you glossed over a very important phrase: "in its pure form" (though I mistyped and said "it's" incorrectly). 

I do not believe pure capitalism exists in the world today, my argument is that as a philosophy, if applied in its purest form, it's meritocratic. you are free to pursue your profits, and if you are talented, work hard, and get a little lucky (never said that luck plays no part), you receive the rewards of that. I view that as meritocratic. you may view that as "fucking retarded," so be it. you're entitled to your opinion.

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