Wednesday, October 20, 2021

Socialist Richard Wolff Learns How Capitalism Helped China


Richard Wolff seems to engage in cognitive dissonance.  His speech comes across as angry.

The choice of words can frame arguments in a way that obscures the truth.  I dislike the way the word "Capitalism" is used, which reportedly was once made popular by the socialists as a way of denigrating the free market.  It makes it sound equivalent to other "isms".  People have told me that it does not matter which economic system we use; we can and should choose whatever economic system we want as if they are all equivalent.  

The correct term is a "free market", which is a system where individuals are allowed to own the means of production, i.e. a business, and engage in voluntary exchanges.  True socialism is the opposite of this in every way, which we can logically conclude is a serious loss of freedom.  If the government either owns or controls the means of production, then the individual cannot make free choices and is at the mercy of the government.  I don't see a difference between this and a slave plantation.  Socialism might be a less obvious form of slavery, but the government technically has full control of the individual.

"Democratic socialism", if such a thing can really exist, just means that the individual is at the mercy of the mob.  In reality, socialist systems that claim to give power to the people just really give power to the thugs in charge.

For a country that calls itself socialist, China has reportedly very little the way of social programs.  Almost everyone has to fend for themselves.  Chinese "socialism" just means capitalism with an authoritarian government.  This is what the Italian Fascists believed in.  The term "fascism" is often misused and is equated to Nazism or racism, but the slogan of the Fascists was, "Everything in the state.  Nothing outside the state."   Mussolini started as a Marxist and was a proponent of socialism. 

The one universal complaint that I hear about "capitalism" is that people have to work for others.  First of all, this is true for any kind of economic system.  Second, I look at this philosophically in the sense that we come into this world with nothing.  The world owes us nothing.  We can only obtain things by exchanging our labor for what we need.  In a free market, we can choose how we do that and not have those decisions forced upon us.

It is an inherent property of human beings that they like to make free choices, own property, do things for profit by making voluntary exchanges.  A person who works for someone else is still trying to profit off his labor.

I think that people suffer from what I call the "free lunch fallacy."  They think that government can provide for them.  But for government to do that they have to take it from someone else by force.  There are consequences to coercive economic actions in how it affects incentives and economic activity.  There aren't enough resources for the government to provide for everyone, so society depends upon having a large number of producers.

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