It occurs to me that we are making a monumental mistake by abandoning our capitalist economic underpinnings. While capitalism is sometimes unforgiving in its nature, it is necessary to our freedom and the long term health of our society. It is a braking force that keeps us from running headlong into a precipice that leads to the destruction of our society.
Every century or so, we seem to forget what makes America a great country. Our society succumbs to the decadence and largess that produce a large economic collapse. We witnessed this during the “Roaring 20’s” when the lack of responsibility was a major contributor to the depression. We have recently repeated this mistake and are in the throes of a new economic disaster that may even dwarf the Great Depression.
Our response to this latest downturn to our economy has been to move quickly and deliberately toward a socialist economic system. But this is not an answer, it is a bandage that will eventually do more harm than good. It removes freedom and imposes a rigid bureaucracy upon us. It drowns us under an ever increasing wave of control in an effort to erase the impact of our behavior. What we seem to miss in the entire chain of events, is that our actions have consequences. By avoiding those consequences we only serve to mask the real problems that pushed our heads underwater in the first place.
Capitalism is economic freedom. It is a self-correcting system as well. Under capitalism and free enterprise, we all exercise our desires in an effort to find what makes us happy. While our desires are reasonable and responsible our economy works beyond what any other system can offer. When we cross over into the realm of decadence and irresponsible greed, the system corrects us by removing our money. When coupled with a free society, this is the most powerful self-correcting social system ever devised. But it requires that we are willing to suffer the consequences of our actions to operate.
By using draconian socialist methods we can blunt the impact of our decadence on society for a time. But it is only a placebo. It does not force the required social change and return us to the responsible economic practices that are required to correct the causes to our problems. In fact, it allows us to fall even farther and deeper before we are called to account. It will place us in the dilemma that plagued Soviet Russia. We may be truly bankrupt as a nation and as an ethical society before we emerge. Then the hole we must crawl from will be much deeper and darker than if we had accepted the correction from the start.