“Laissez-faire capitalism works very well in theory. The government sets clearly-defined rules, within which corporations compete for profits. Companies win by providing the best products at the lowest price; investors win by allocating scarce capital where it can be put to best use; the country as a whole reaps the benefit.
In an age of corruption anxiety, however, laissez-faire often means that companies themselves get to set the rules. …”
I would argue that laissez-faire capitalism doesn’t even work well in theory. Life isn’t abstract. It is concrete and takes place in reality.
The theory is based on a number of flawed assumptions that have been discredited. The most important assumption is human equality. It simply isn’t true that all people are created equal. In fact, we now know that some people actually are born more gifted than others. What’s more, we know from fMRI scans and modern neuroscience that some people are more violent and impulsive than others.
I fully grant the point that Axios is making that the wealthy are writing our laws and that their lobbyists are corrupting regulators like we see with Aji Pait and the FCC. As the FCC chairman, his solution to corporate censorship on social media is to stand pat and do nothing because “muh free market principles.” Blompf’s solution to the problem is also “be good.”
It simply isn’t true that everyone has the same chance in life under laissez-faire capitalism. Look at Blompf who started out in life by inheriting his vast fortune from his daddy. Look at Meghan McCain who is only on television as a political commentator because her daddy was John McCain. Look at Hillary Clinton who thought she deserved to be the last Democratic nominee for president and had the primary rigged against Bernie Sanders so that she could have her chance to carry on the Clinton dynasty.
It is really even worse than that.
If we think about the problem of cognitive stratification in the context of a free-market economy, then we can see how some people are simply born genetic losers. They don’t have the intelligence, education or the character to succeed under the rules of laissez-faire capitalism. Some people are literally predisposed to poverty and criminality because of their low-IQ and impulsive behavior. They are in a cruel way predestined to end up born in shattered households in trailer parks where there is no investment and no jobs except selling illicit drugs and end up behind bars in a modern prison. I’m referring of course to the White people who do meth and abuse prescription drugs in Appalachia.
In really poor places like Central Appalachia, the Mississippi Delta, Detroit or the Alabama Black Belt, the problem is compounded by history. If you are born in one of these places, then you are immediately confronted with an economic hellscape in life because free-market capitalism is based on abstract nonsense while in reality your life is embedded in time. You are also dunked in a cultural bath by forces beyond your control which can be quite toxic that are embedded in time. You have to search for jobs in mountains and valleys which are embedded in geography.
Now, what is going to happen as the robots continue to displace the working class of all races, as Andrew Yang is telling the country? I would argue that those people will end up like all the former sharecroppers in places today like the Mississippi Delta or all thr former industrial workers in the Mahoning Valley in Ohio. What happens to laissez-faire capitalism when you have to be a genius to find employment?
Note: Unfortunately, I don’t have the time to keep expanding on why free-market capitalism is destined to be thrown into the trash pile of history alongside feudalism. I have to get on the road this afternoon and travel between two of the poorest states in America.