Why Capitalism?

Days before the 2014 Winter Olympics one of the quotes coming out of Sochi was, “Don’t flush the toilet, don’t drink the water and don’t expect a good night’s sleep”. ( NYYorkDailyNews )  Even after spending 51 Billion dollars on the games, the plumbing did not work, roads were not paved and living quarters were sub par in that Black Sea resort town.  Anyone taking a trip to stay in Orlando, Atlanta, or Nashville would have a far better experience with accommodations and amenities.  The living situation in much of Russia is far worse than that.  The difference is simply that capitalism produces the highest standard of living for the most people.  People, given the freedom to seek the opportunities that are best for them, will consistently have a higher standard of living that those whose lives are orchestrated by government.  The more orchestrated and controlled an economy is, the poorer the citizens of that country are.

As the United States has moved to implement more regulations and more entitlements, the standard of living for the average American has dropped.  Average hourly wages have dropped.  There are a record number of Americans no longer in the labor force.  Those of us working are paying these able bodied people to stay home.  There are more people are on food stamps than ever before and the rate of poverty in the US has continued to rise.  It’s not rocket science.  The more we implement policies that encourage dependency on government the poorer we as a country get.  The burden on the working middle class continues to increase.  It is not the rich that are paying for all these benefits, it is the average working American.

In college I wrote a paper lauded by my instructor which glorified the benefits of communism.  It was all about how everyone should be given their fair share and how communism had been implemented poorly in China and Russia.  The reality is that communism can’t be implemented in any way that is successful.  People will always act in their own best interests.  Those that get all their stuff free will do the minimum to maintain the free stuff.  That is why the able bodied, not yet retired people in America that are being paid while not working will continue to not work as long as the government will pay them.   The simple fact that people are people is enough to prevent communism from ever working as it does in theory.

But what about the excesses of capitalism where the worker is exploited and the consumer is ripped off?   Indeed these abuses do happen but, in a truly free and prosperous society these abuses are quickly eliminated.  Prosperity allows people to move from job to job for better wages.  That gives employers a significant incentive to treat their employees well.  Consumer products that harm people are quickly taken off the market as the reputation of the company making those faulty products is quickly trashed.  Beyond that civil and criminal law has stiff penalties for knowingly harming consumers.

So why do our politicians consistently promote benefits knowing that it harms the long term prosperity of this country.  Why is it popular among politicians and the media to say they are taking from the wealthy to give to the poor.  For the democrats it is not hard to figure out.  The position buys votes and power.  Everyone knows the examples of the USSR, China, Cuba, and Vietnam and the misery communism has brought.   They are unwilling to let facts get in the way of power and control.  The media’s support of the false and detrimental narrative is more difficult to explain.  Clearly, ABC, CBS, and NBC have been willing to falsely edit the news in the past year to promote the idea that cops are out to get black people or to make the economy look better than it is.  A dropping unemployment rate is not the headline when its caused by the lowest labor participation rate in history.  It’s new designed to prop up those in power and designed to fool people into thinking they are doing better than they are.

Our current path will result in widespread poverty yet no one in the media or in office seems willing or able to stand up and tell the truth.  Such poverty was evident in China and the Soviet Union before they allowed capitalist reforms.  Rampant poverty is currently evident in Cuba and Venezuela both countries that are embracing extreme socialism or communism.     The fact is that if the state takes to much from its populace so that the state can redistribute that income or spend it the result is a populace that can’t hold on to the fruit of its own labor.  That population will eventually stop trying to produce and for a long as it lasts they will soak up the government benefits.  This is already happening with the largest ever non-working and not looking for a job group.  Those that work will stop supporting everyone else and at that point all collapses.

The businesses that  support the media and the government in this effort to redistribute income are creating their own demise.  Those that support fake economics promoted by the likes of CBS are adding to the problem.    Those that advertise with ABC, CBS, and NBS are funding their eventual failure.   They may get a short term gain from crony capitalism and government largess, but when their remaining employees can’t support themselves their will be no one to pay for the things they manufacture.

Novel Characters — Exploring Education and Freedom

Bob Mayer had gone to an almost Ivy League college, one where liberal arts was the theme and secular progressivism the religion. Determined to get into medical school right after graduation Bob made a number of sacrifices and compromises so that the doors to medical school could welcome him unconditionally.   Fifteen years before he found himself the subject of a massive federal fugitive hunt, Bob was dutifully absorbing everything that his elite college told him.

Wait, you may ask,  who is Bob Mayer?   Years from the time of this writing, which describe his formative college years he will become the chief virologist at the NIH(National Institutes of Health) in charge of creating the annual flew vaccine.  At the moment though, he is just a senior in college.  He is in the process of applying to medical schools.  Through the last 4 years he had been diligent, studying to the exclusion of the vast number of activities available on campus. The only exception to this was that he had managed to maintain his taekwondo training.   He had not been able to improve on his skills, but he had not lost them.  The trade off was a 4.0 average.

During his time in school, beyond the science, for which he had a passion, several courses had made a significant impression on him.  These were, Reproductive Health 202, Philosophy 101, Russia Studies 303. and Constitutional Law 425.  Since, as a 21 year old senior his goals were clear, he had a great desire to please his instructors.  Doing so meant, not thinking for oneself, but absorbing the tenor and conceptual framework presented by their classes.  How he later came to hold views that were in conflict with those that were taught was a mystery to many of his colleagues.   As Bob reflected on those courses, his recollection of their tenor and approach amazed him.

Reproductive Health was a BIO 200 course where the study of the male and female reproductive tracts was taught.  As you might expect a lot of attention was given to the physical anatomy of these systems and to the hormonal cycles.   In this course, the time and effort spent covering female reproductive systems was about 5 times the time and effort spent to cover male reproductive systems.   Since those systems had to be able to carry a baby, this was not that surprising.    The process of fertilization and gestation was also covered.   Among the things that were abundantly clear from the course, was the message that as a zygote went through its stages from zygote, to morula, to blastocyst, to embryo and ultimately to fetus, it was no more than a mass of tissue.    The fact that this was a baby that was developing was consciously overlooked.  In addition,  the course worked in details about the coming population explosion and how if people kept reproducing we would run out of resources.  Actually, if you got the message you would marvel that a single meal ever made it to the table before all those starving people lapped it up.  The other message that was delivered in unambiguous terms was that humans were no different than any other animal when it came to reproduction.   The course made the act of reproduction simply an animal function.

Philosophy 101 was an eye opener.  The class read the more rudimentary and well known works from Kant, Descartes,  Locke, Plato, Aristotle, Nietzsche,  and Marx.   Thinking back on it Bob wondered if Karl Marx really belonged with the prior group.  Whether he belonged to the group or not the instructor, Dr.  Brubaker was enamored with Karl Marx.   His two great works, the Communist Manifesto and Das Kapital argued for the downfall of capitalism and its ultimate replacement by socialism.    In order to get an A in the class, all a student had to do was propound on the virtues of Communism and use Karl Marx as their source.   As dutifully as he could, Bob made the case for communism in the United States.  Suddenly he was in the professor’s inner circle.  Years later , even though he worked for the government Bob saw how the government with a significant part of the system socialized through Medicare and Medicaid had destroyed much of what was best about being a doctor.  The communist radicalization of students at the most elite schools was a hard process to reverse.  Kids with no business experience and no way to see how communism impacted everyone were being fed this Utopian scheme.  Bob had seen through that after many years in the real world.  Even so that course had touched his life immeasurably.

Offsetting the Utopian view of communism taught by professor Brubaker, was a course in Soviet-Western bloc politics.  The instructor, Martha Olcott, though as liberal as the other instructors was a realist about Soviet life.  Ten years prior to the fall of the Berlin wall she was predicting the collapse of Soviet communism.   She blamed it on its corruption and implementation as much as on the inability of the Soviets to control a population that was made of so many unassimilated minorities.  She had predicted that the Poles, the Bulgarians, the Czechs, the Romanians and more would rebel and bring down the USSR.    She never really blamed communism for its faults.  Bob however noticed that centrally run governments seem ill prepared to help their own people.    It was much later that this idea of poor central planning would take hold in his mind.

The last course that Bob remembered from his college days that had made a huge impact was the constitutional law course.  In 1990, this course presented the Supreme Court as an all knowing self correcting protector of American freedom.    The constitution itself was this solid document whose tenets and principles were upheld by the highest court in the land.  It was a world where evils against the minority could be corrected and where freedom was protected most of all.  The idea that the constitution itself was a living document, where its basic guarantees could be discarded for higher moral ideals was never presented.  The people that wanted to disband the constitution in order to promote an unlimited governmental power were never mentioned as part of constitutional law.  Looking back, Bob thought that perhaps their view was much more prevalent than anyone had ever thought.  The justices had been portrayed as people of the highest character dedicated to protecting freedom first.  Witnessing many of today’s rulings, Bob had come to believe they had been compromised.

In any case, much of Bob’s formative thought process had been formed by these classes and experiences.   As he went to work and diligently sought to create vaccines that protected the populace from misery and death he had a warm opinion of this country.   He believe the work he did was a tremendous medical benefit to the populace.  How was he to know that opinion was about the be shattered and  that everything he thought of government was a lie and one that might cost him his life.  Nevertheless, I get ahead on myself.  For now Bob is working to identify and contain the next potential flu pandemic.

Super Power No More…. Victims All

On the world stage today we have two super powers, Russia and China. But what of the United States you may ask?  Doesn’t the United States have the strongest military in the world? Yes, it does, on paper, but that does not make the United States a super power. Instead we have become the world’s greatest victim.

We can’t stop mean old Iran from getting a nuclear bomb, our economy has fewer people working now than it has had the last 70 years.  Mean old North Korea has its missiles targeted at us.  Our water is dirty. Our air is unbreathable.  Our industry leaders are greedy and worthless. We have invited terrorists all over the world to blow us up as it is our fault they hate us.  We have reset our relationships with the Arabs, and the Russians and they still want to kill us.  This is Barrack Obama’s America, weak, faithless and indefensible.    Oh, poor us.  We are the cause of the worlds ills and because of that the United States will disarm and be everyone’s victim.  Then our President, the man who should be the most powerful man in the world will apologized for our defending ourselves.

In order to be a true superpower,  we would need a leader who believed in and smartly exercised both the current capability of the military and its deterrent threat. Our President believes in dismantling the military and leaving us open to an increasingly dangerous world. The proof is in his actions. By announcing to our enemies the Taliban just when we were leaving Afghanistan Barrack Obama removed any capability of a deterrent threat and gutted any possible current commitments.  At that point he telegraphed to the world that he would not stick by his friends if it involved using military force. He announced to the world and to every terrorist that they had won. He has gone on to propose cuts to the military that would leave this country naked in the event of aggression. China and Russia have both proven they are capable of that aggression.

We would need a leader that was clearly capable of applying our economic strengths toward removing potential threats. Already with Iran he has shown that he is not willing to use sanctions to prevent them from getting a nuclear bomb. In the Ukraine he is offering an economic incentives to stave off a military coup.   The net result of that will be to just give resources to the Russians, a reward for their putting in their own puppet government.  His gutting of our capitalist economy has also dramatically weakened our standing in the world. His out of control debt has weakened the dollar to the point that Russia laughs at the thought of our applying economic pressure.
To be a super power, you have to understand how the world works. If you won’t admit that there are those bent on destroying you and that they are evil you will never confront them for what they are. Putin wants to reassemble Russia into the USSR and he is on his way. China is eyeing Japan with increasing hunger.  When we had significant advantages in arms and we were clearly willing to launch nuclear weapons in order to defend Western Europe, Russia saw strength. China feared invading Japan.  Now Putin sees Obama for what he is, a coward, willing to give away whole countries rather than to fight for freedom.  China does not believe that Obama would honor our alliance with Japan.
The net result is that the United States is a has been. What might it has is squandered in the ideological pulp of the Obama administration. Our enemies are looking to carve us up and the policies of this administration will not stop them. Instead of putting his effort into spying on the Tea Party and investigating 350 million Americans perhaps Obama should start defending this country’s interests. It is too late to save the Ukraine and Crimea, Syria, Libya, and Egypt. Russia has those marbles. Maybe we can save ourselves, Japan and Western Europe, but not on the current course Obama is taking us on.

Perhaps the media, instead of quoting today’s administration propaganda could get on board and point out the truth of what is occurring in the world.  When Russia knocks on their door it will be too late.