The decade of capitalism?

“On the last day of 2009, that awful year, I was listening to a report on National Public Radio (yes, I’m a listener). Reporter Tamara Keith presented a by-now-familiar recap of the worst financial and corporate scandals of the decade, from Enron and Martha Stewart to Tyco and Bernie Madoff. It was a depressing slog of greed, venality and theft. When the report was over, ‘Morning Edition’ host Steve Inskeep summarized the report with a tart: ‘The decade in capitalism.’ I don’t want to single out Inskeep, since he was doing what pretty much the entire media establishment has done, particularly of late: reducing ‘capitalism’ to its alleged sins. And that’s the point. There are few areas of life where a thing responsible for so much good gets so little credit for it. Imagine if I were to collect the most infamous deeds of African-Americans over the last decade — say, Michael Vick’s dog-fighting scandal and O.J. Simpson’s most recent criminal exploit — and then put a bow on it with the phrase ‘the decade in black America.’ What if I did the same thing with Jews? Bernie Madoff, the face of Jewish America! Do the scandals of Rod Blagojevich, Charlie Rangel and John Edwards define the Democratic Party from 2000 to 2010? Do Abu Ghraib and the balloon boy sum up America? … Every good thing capitalism helps produce — from singing careers to cures for diseases to staggering charity — is credited to some other sphere of our lives. Every problem with capitalism, meanwhile, is laid at her feet. Except the problems with capitalism — greed, theft, etc. — aren’t capitalism’s fault, they’re humanity’s. Socialist countries have greedy thieves, too. Free markets are in disrepute these days, particularly by the people running Washington. For them, government is the solution and capitalism is the problem. If they have their way over the next decade, they won’t cure what allegedly ails capitalism — people will still steal and lie — but they will impede everything that makes capitalism great. And that will be bad for everyone, even NPR.” –National Review editor Jonah Goldberg


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4 Responses to “The decade of capitalism?”

  1. Alfie Says:

    That’s a good piece I would not of caught in my e travels. Thanks!


  2. Patrick Sperry Says:

    I thought so, thanks Alfie.


  3. Ron Russell Says:

    The biggest thieves in our society are not those in the private sector, but rather the ones in government at all levels from the county courthouses to the state house and finally to the biggest thieves in Washington. They steal in many ways, but foremore is the utter lack of respect for the people they serve and the lackadazical way they go about their jobs wasting time and move in every move they make. They feel safe and secure in their government jobs both elected and appointed and in most cases they are correct. They need not worry about doing a good job for mediocrity will get them by, this is not the case in the private sector, and they will stay in their positions until that time they can retire which in most cases is after 20 years, while the slob in the private sector will in all likelyhood have to work until he is 65 years old. Yep, it these guys in government who are the real crooks the villians in our society. Capitalism cleans itself by getting rid of the inefficient, while socialism rewards those who failure, with a pat on the back and a promotion.


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