Below are my opening and closing statements from an Oxford-style debate hosted by The NYC Political Forum. My friend Roberto Guzman and I debated the affirmative case and won. (Reading time 8 minutes.)Continue reading “Debate: “Capitalism is the most morally superior political and social system.””
Part One: The Political Philosophy of John Locke
In his works “A Letter Concerning Toleration” (1689) and “The Second Treatise On Civil Government” (1690), philosopher John Locke created what would become the philosophical source for the founding principles of the United States. In what follows, I will summarize the central arguments presented in the Letter, followed by the arguments presented in the Treatise. Following the summaries, I will demonstrate the influence that these works had on the thinking of the founding fathers and the political documents they created.Continue reading “The Political Philosophy of John Locke and Its Influence on the Founding Fathers and the Political Documents They Created”
That Mayor Bloomberg believes that “tax policy is the way government uses capitalism… to encourage the right behavior” is shocking. It belies a fundamental ignorance of capitalism while revealing the mindset of a dictator.
Capitalism is the system wherein the government exists solely to protect the right of the individual citizen to make his own choices based on his own judgment, so long as he abstains from violating the equal rights of others. A dictatorship, by contrast, is the system wherein the government forces the individual citizen to follow the judgment of a single political leader.
Of course, we don’t yet live under a dictatorship or anything near one. What we live under is a mixed economy, i.e., a mixture of capitalism and statism that is currently drifting towards the latter. In this context, the brazen assertion that the purpose of taxes is to influence behavior, rather finance government, represents yet another principled step away from our country’s founding principles.
Under capitalism, a political leader is not endowed with superior wisdom and the right to enforce it on the citizenry through tax policy, law, or any other means. Not in theory, not in fact, and not in a country founded on the rights to “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.”
Only New York Times “experts” could describe the nationalization of private industries currently taking place in Russia as examples of “corrupt capitalism,” rather than as examples of socialism. As defined by novelist-philosopher Ayn Rand, “capitalism is a social system based on the recognition of individual rights, including property rights, in which all property is privately owned.” Socialism, its antipode, is “a theory or system of social organization which advocates the vesting of the ownership and control of the means of production, capital, land, etc. in the community as a whole.”
Why does Roldo Bartmole, in his article “Our Tin Cup Rattlers,” refer to wealthy businessmen who support the doctrines of government subsidies as “capitalists,” when such doctrines are fundamentally socialist? In a system of laissez-faire capitalism, forced public subsides for both the rich and the poor would not exist; the choice of public support for either would be strictly individual and voluntary.