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In the “Capitalism vs. Socialism” Debate, Freedom Is Found in Capitalism, Not Socialism

George Reisman has 13 illustrations of the benevolence of capitalism. It is a must read, in my view.

It is quite lengthy, but here are some excerpts that caught my eye:

(6) … in a market economy … private ownership of the means of production operates to the benefit of everyone, the nonowners, as well as owners. The nonowners obtain the benefit of the means of production owned by other people. They obtain this benefit as and when they buy the products of those means of production. To get the benefit of General Motors’ factories and their equipment, or the benefit of Exxon’s oil fields, pipelines, and refineries, I do not have to be a stockholder or a bondholder in those firms. I merely have to be in a position to buy an automobile, or gasoline, or whatever, that they produce.

Moreover, thanks to the dynamic, progressive aspect of the uniformity-of-rate-of-profit or rate-of-return principle that I explained a moment ago, the general benefit from privately owned means of production to the nonowners continually increases, as they are enabled to buy ever more and better products at progressively falling real prices. It cannot be stressed too strongly that these progressive gains, and the generally rising living standards that they translate into, vitally depend on the capitalist institutions of private ownership of the means of production, the profit motive, and economic competition, and would not be possible without them. It is these that underlie motivated, effective individual initiative in raising the standard of living.

(10 ) … capitalism is in actuality as thoroughly and rationally planned an economic system as it is possible to have. The planning that goes on under capitalism, without hardly ever being recognized as such, is the planning of each individual participant in the economic system. Every individual who thinks about a course of economic activity that would be of benefit to him and how to carry it out is engaged in economic planning. Individuals plan to buy homes, automobiles, appliances, and, indeed, even groceries. They plan what jobs to train for and where to offer and apply the abilities they possess. Business firms plan to introduce new products or discontinue existing products; they plan to change their methods of production or continue to use the methods they presently use; they plan to open branches or close branches; they plan to hire new workers or layoff workers they presently employ; they plan to add to their inventories or reduce their inventories.

Ironically … socialism, as Mises has shown, is incapable of rational economic planning. In destroying the price system and its foundations, namely, private ownership of the means of production, the profit motive, and competition, socialism destroys the intellectual division of labor that is essential to rational economic planning. It makes the impossible demand that the planning of the economic system be carried out as an indivisible whole in a single mind that only an omniscient deity could possess.

What socialism represents is so far from rational economic planning that it is actually the prohibition of rational economic planning. In the first instance, by its very nature, it is a prohibition of economic planning by everyone except the dictator and the other members of the central planning board. They are to enjoy a monopoly privilege on planning, in the absurd, virtually insane belief that their brains can achieve the all-seeing, all-knowing capabilities of  omniscient deities. They cannot. Thus, what socialism actually represents is the attempt to substitute the thinking and planning of one man, or at most of a mere handful of men, for the thinking and planning of tens and hundreds of millions, indeed, of billions of men. By its nature, this attempt to make the brains of so few meet the needs of so many has no more prospect of success than would an attempt to make the legs of so few the vehicle for carrying the weight of so many.

But as Dr. Reisman notes at the beginning of the essay, freedom is the essential element in free-market capitalism. So, I will add that besides economic freedom which is necessary to raise the standard of living for all, there also needs to be personal and political freedom as well. The freedom of speech and the Press, freedom of religion, the right to keep and bear arms, the right to due process, and the right to be secure in one’s person, papers, houses and effects are important freedoms for a prosperous as well as free and civilized society.

In the U.S. we seem to be losing more and more of those personal and political freedoms, as well as the economic freedom that existed here prior to World War I and the imposition of the income tax-theft.

In Orwellian China, what they have now is some sort of “Social Credit Score,” in which almost everything the people do is monitored by the government. Their traveling behaviors, the trains they take or their behavior as a pedestrian following or not following the street lights, their social media expressions, and so on.

If they get a score of “untrustworthy,” those people are barred from trains and planes, and are “unable to move even a single step,” as the bureaucrats have stated. So I assume that the people of China are not or will not be able to “vote with their feet,” if they are not physically able to travel out of the country. How will they be able to travel out of such a tyrannical dictatorship hellhole? The former East Germany would shoot people trying to escape. Those trying to leave the former Soviet Union were considered deserters and traitors, according to Wikipedia.

Hmm, not being able to “vote with their feet” to leave tyranny reminds me of the uncapitalistic national socialist Donald Trump, except his restrictions and the government Wall he wants to surround his utopian closed society are presumably to keep people out and prevent foreigners from going to a better place as they attempt to flee tyranny. (But what will future Washington administrations use the Wall for, Donald? Hmmm?)

So, despite whatever capitalistic reforms China has attempted to make in recent years, it seems to want to become more like North Korea, rather than more like the U.S. (I want to say, “the former U.S.,” given how down the totalitarian drain Amerika has gone. Oh, well. We have the college campus craziness with the suppression of dissent from PC idiocy, and the Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortezes of the world who want to turn America into a socialist utopia, which, if you read the above Reisman article you will understand how such a utopia is literally impossible and historically always failed.)

If Donald Trump really wants to have the U.S. compete with China, he should dismantle all impediments to Americans’ freedom, especially economic freedom, not increase such impediments as he keeps threatening to do. Dump the tariff-taxes, get rid of the unconstitutional bureaucracies whose purpose is mainly to live high off the hog on the wealth those bureaucrats suck away from the workers and producers of society. Just as the area around Washington, D.C. is the wealthiest part of the country (because of all the parasites associated with U.S. government and all the wealth they siphon off the actual producers of America), the bureaucrats in China are also of great wealth.

As far as the increasing Orwellian government surveillance and molestation of the people and their private lives and movements in the U.S., what we need to do is have some sort of private agency, or agencies, to make government bureaucrats, including all lawmakers, law enforcers, judges, and executives like governors and Presidents, report all their activities and submit to 24-7 monitoring by the people, rather than the other way around. We really need to make it very uncomfortable and unprofitable for anyone to be a government official of any kind, which should help to ensure a freer and healthier society.

Elizabeth Warren the Mad Power-Grabber

Elizabeth Warren is the U.S. senator from Massachusetts running for a second term that she supposedly will easily win on Tuesday. But she is campaigning in other states, most recently Ohio and Wisconsin (two very big electoral college states for a Presidential election), supposedly for candidates in close races in those states. I am sure that this trend of Warren staying outside of Massachusetts will continue and escalate after she is reelected to the U.S. Senate, given her statement that she would “take a hard look” at running for President in 2020.

You see, power hungry politicians love power so much that they are constantly seeking higher offices and more power.

Warren, a.k.a. Pocahontas, isn’t the only political hack from Massachusetts to begin a run for President while supposedly “serving” her constituents in a current office. During the 1980s, Gov. Michael Dukakis was reelected in 1986 to a third term, and already “testing the waters” for a 1988 Presidential bid.

In 1987 and ’88 Dukakis was absent from Massachusetts so many times, he should have resigned as governor and let Lt. Gov. Evelyn Murphy take over officially as the acting governor. But noooo, Dukakis was not able to let go of his current power in his drive for even more power. Just as Elizabeth Warren is doing now.

And then when Evelyn Murphy ran for governor of Massachusetts in 1990, Dukakis wouldn’t help her and didn’t campaign for her, as Barack Obama and Donald Trump are doing now on behalf of their respective party candidates in elections this Tuesday. So, Dukakis (who turns 85 today, by the way — must be all those turkey carcasses), was kind of walking all over his Lt. Gov. Evelyn Murphy while he ran for President, in which she performed all the duties as governor in his absence, but he wouldn’t resign and make it “official,” or help her in her 1990 election bid, which she lost even in the primary.

And then we had Gov. Mitt Romney, a.k.a. “Willard” Romney, who walked all over his Lt. Governor Kerry Healey, a.k.a. “Muffy Healey,” while Romney was absent from the state for over 200 days in 2006, his last year as governor while Healey performed all the duties of governor. And then Romney wouldn’t help her in her election bid for governor in 2006, just like Dukakis in 1990 (because Romney was so power hungry, like Dukakis and Pocahontas in their lust for higher political office). Healey lost, of course.

In 2006, when Willard Romney was already running for President and abandoning his duties as governor, he shoved the mandatory health insurance law down the throats of the people of Massachusetts. So, right there he’s telling people not only is he not a free-market kind of guy, but he’s ramming mandatory health insurance regardless of how destructive it would turn out to be, just so he can campaign with some new government scheme to brag about from his time as governor.

Brag? About “RomneyCare”? By 2012 RomneyCare didn’t control costs, but he did cause the state’s largest provider for the poor to have to make cuts because of the impact of RomneyCare.

I think politicians with power love to order the masses to do this or that, whether you like it or not. “You must — MUST — have health insurance,” Romney commanded. Just like Michael Dukakis ordering the people of Massachusetts you vill wear a seat belt, and you vill enjoy it.

And Elizabeth Warren, who wants to order private businesses to organize themselves via sex, national origin or race on their boards and their management teams, whether they like it or not, consumers be damned. Since when does Elizabeth Warren, creator of the Democrats’ money-laundering racket “Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” care about consumers? What Pocahontas cares about is power, and more power for bureaucrats. In her bizarre world of irrationality, businesspeople must be accountable to bureaucrats, not to the consumers as it would work in an honest world.

Anyway, back to Romney. Here is Willard at the signing ceremony for his mandatory health care atrocity, introducing his unindicted co-conspirator Ted Kennedy:

As I wrote about Romney regarding his upcoming easy win for U.S. Senate from Utah (one of his many home states):

During his 2012 Presidential campaign, Romney said that, regarding taxes, “everything is on the table,” including raising taxes on the wealthy to reduce the deficit. No surprise there.

During his time as governor of Massachusetts, Romney raised taxes on corporations. The tax hikes, according to columnist Deroy Murdock, “totaled $128 million in 2003, $95.5 in 2004, and $85 million in 2005.” And, according to Murdock, Romney “created or increased fees by $432 million…Romney charged more for marriage licenses (from $6 to $12), gun registrations (from $25 to $75), a used-car sales tax ($10 million), gasoline deliveries ($60 million), real-estate transfers ($175 million), and more. Particularly obnoxious was Romney’s $10 fee per Certificate of Blindness.”

My, what a great guy, this Willard.

You see, he is typical of the elitist political class, taking from the poor and middle class and redistributing the wealth to the rich fat-cats, as we saw in his support of the Wall Street Bailout in 2008. To show how clueless he was about the Federal Reserve and the financial crisis of 2007-2009, Romney endorsed the reappointment of Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke in 2010. During his 2012 campaign, Romney received the most among the GOP candidates (and more than Obama as well) from the Big Banks in campaign contributions between just January and September of 2011, according to Michael Snyder: $352,200 from Goldman Sachs, $184,800 from Morgan Stanley, and $112,500 from Bank of America.

As a crony capitalist with Bain Capital, Romney used government subsidies with some of the companies Bain bought out to restructure and sell and profit from.

Speaking of crony capitalism, when it comes to “climate change” interventionism, Romney is all in. No free market solutions in sight with this Willard. For instance, in 2012 he cited a study in support of carbon taxes, and, according to Forbes (or you can view that article here), Romney’s advisors were all for cap-and-trade legislation/regulations, subsidizing renewable energy, with one advisor who was involved in the “Department of Energy loan guarantee program that funded Solyndra,” and another who was responsible for getting the 1990 Clean Air Act amendments passed.

If you live in Utah and would rather not vote for Romney for U.S. Senate, then you might want to consider the Libertarian Party candidate, Craig Bowden.

So this Willard Romney person is the one who called Donald Trump a “phony,” a “fraud,” a “fake,” and a “con man”! (Watch Willard begin his next run for President immediately after getting elected to the U.S. Senate, just like Elizabeth Warren. They are drooling for POWER!)

But when it comes to Elizabeth Warren and honesty and integrity in politics, I think that Liawatha comes very close to Willard in being a “phony,” a “fraud,” a “fake,” and a “con man” (or con-woman) in her claiming to be a minority to get her position on the Harvard Law School faculty. Because Warren knows nothing about law, and virtually anything else that matters, she had to take the sleazy way to “success.”

Incidentally, not that you would want to be reminded, but here is what Elizabeth Warren thinks of entrepreneurs, the producers of wealth that she as a bureaucrat wants to take away by force:

She’s trying to take down those who actually create the wealth in society by claiming that she and others share in the accomplishments based on “paying” for roads, schools, and police.

But, as Robert P. Murphy wrote,

For one thing, a factory owner already does pay a lot for use of the government roads and labor services of his employees. In contrast to other “public goods,” roads often have a much more dedicated payment stream, in the form of tolls and gasoline taxes. So the factory owner, who pays trucking companies to ship products around, is already paying a lot more to maintain the interstate highway system than is a lower-income person living in Manhattan with no car.

Politicians don’t really think things through, do they?

So, in that video Warren roars, “You were safe in your factory because of police forces and fire forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory…”

You mean, like power-grabbing socialists, Elizabeth? Like the Venezuelan regime? Like Cuba? The Soviet Union? Like you greedy bureaucrats in Washington? The ones for whom nothing is ever enough, no amount of taxation is enough for you crooks!

As with most politicians, has Elizabeth Warren ever produced anything of value in her nearly 70 years? Should we compare her or any politician or bureaucrat to Bill Gates, Steve Jobs, Andrew Carnegie, or Martha Stewart, or Oprah?

Nope. That bunch of entrepreneurs created wealth with their talents and many, many people have benefited from their accomplishments. They were or are creators. Wealth creators.

But the power grabbers and power seekers of politics and government continue their push for more and more power over others. They are not the wealth creators of society, it’s just the opposite. They are the takers, the confiscators, the thieves, the obstructionists, the true “oppressors” of our time.