There is No Ethos of Capitalism

There is no ethos of capitalism, just exploitative rhetoric. Capitalism is, according to one version of the myth, meant to be fair in that it is a meritocracy. If you work hard, then you will be rewarded adequately. Empirically, this is false. The system does not reward hard work, and in any case, the rewards that actual capitalists reap cannot possibly be achieved by everyone who fulfils the same degree of hard work. Not everyone, no matter how smart and hard-working, can possess the same amount of material wealth as the 90% percentile. There simply isn’t enough stuff. Continue reading

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Conversing with Capitalists, Or, I am not a Communist

Occasionally I meet people who really love capitalism. They proudly call themselves capitalists. They extol  its virtues. They confidently explain to me how capitalism fairly distributes scarce resources and encourages productive competition. They prattle on about something they call “trickle-down economics.” Apparently capitalism is just the best. It makes everyone’s life better (this hyperlink might be a satire. It’s hard to tell with these capitalists). I’m told that if it wasn’t for capitalism, I wouldn’t have a computer or a smartphone and I would have polio. Continue reading