Barton Swaim, in his Wall Street Journal op-ed, pointed out “socialists'” error when they claim that capitalism is a system. Their attempts at such a definition—whether of economics, or politics, of…whatever—is necessary, though, in order for them to draw their supposedly favorable comparisons between the socialism flavor of the moment and capitalism.
But capitalism isn’t a system at all, as Simone Weil pointed out 80 years ago, using the then-European economy as her example, and which Swaim cited:
…consists in certain methods of production, consumption, and exchange, which are continually varying, however, and which depend upon certain fundamental relationships: between the production and the circulation of goods, between the circulation of goods and money, between money and production, between money and consumption.
Or, it’s consumers and producers, buyers and sellers, coming together entirely voluntarily and of their own volition, to exchange things each party valued for valued things the other party had—and after which exchange, all parties were better off than they were before the exchange.
The critical part of this arrangement, this unsystematic economy, consists in its voluntary and self-initiated nature. It cannot be a system because it does not even approach anything systematic.
Sadly, the obfuscation of “systematizing” what they claim to be “capitalism” is all that the 21st century crop of socialists, the Left and its Progressive-Democratic Party, have. They certainly have no coherent economic, or political, or whatever policies on which to expound, other than these:
- Big Government is the answer
2. Raising taxes
3. Raising Government spending