Maybe it’s just me, but I’m seeing more open grumbling about capitalism than I used to. There was a time one could not say that, maybe, capitalism really doesn’t work in the long run without being shouted down. But now I see people grumbling about capitalism almost every day. Even the Pope is running around saying that the unfettered pursuit of money is the “dung of the devil.”
The problem, of course, is that capitalism doesn’t work for the masses unless you regulate the hell out of it, which the high priests of capitalism will not accept. Ironically, the past 30 years of deregulation (while celebrating the triumph of capitalism over communism) have done a bang-up job demonstrating that Karl Marx was right about one thing, at least — capitalism carries the seeds of its own destruction.
I don’t have to persuade you “regulars” why this is true, but those of you who wandered in late can read A Wealthy Capitalist on Why Money Doesn’t Trickle Down, Capitalism Simply Isn’t Working and Here Are the Reasons Why, and More Compelling Evidence That Free Market Capitalism Doesn’t Work Without Government Regulation.
If the true believers of capitalism had the sense God gave cucumbers they’d be at least considering re-instating some of the old safeguards, such as the Glass-Steagall Act, to save capitalism from complete collapse someday. But they won’t. It’s against their religion. See this commentary from a blogger whom I doubt it all that wealthy —
[Sen. Bernie] Sanders moronically said to John Harwood on CNBC, “What I think is obscene [is] when you have the top one tenth of one percent owning almost as much as the bottom 90.”
That’s capitalism. That’s our history. That’s why we are not Vietnam or Cambodia. We are not the old USSR or Tiananmen Square in China. We are successful because success is not legislated, but achieved.
As the current system works for fewer and fewer of us, I’m seeing more people, younger people especially, say out loud that capitalism doesn’t work. It’s not really a movement yet, but if current trends continue I think it will be in three to five years or so.
On the other hand, economic adviser Jeremy Rifkin says that capitalism is about to experience “the most exquisite of deaths.”
“We are seeing the final triumph of capitalism followed by its exit off the world stage and the entrance of the collaborative commons,” Rifkin predicts.
This is not socialism but an entirely new economic model. That sounds exciting, but what the hell is it? I’ve read the piece and cannot make sense of it. But maybe some of you will.