Do you believe in capitalism?¿Creen ustedes en el capitalismo? Do you believe in Capitalism?

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rrteacher eNotes educator| Certified Educator

It's not a matter of belief, capitalism in one form or another is a reality, and a mixed one in terms of human impact. Without sensible regulation, capitalism leads to extreme wealth inequalities, environmental destruction, monopolies, and other ills. Yet it is also the single best way to generate wealth, not to mention the goods and services that lead to high standards of living for large sectors of the population. The key, I think, is to strike the right regulatory balance, and also not, even as we laud the principles of economic freedom that undergird capitalism, to uncritically apply the principles of market ideology to every aspect of human existence.  That can be difficult given many people's ideological predispositions about capitalism as well as the influence of capitalists themselves on the making and enforcement of regulations. 

Kristen Lentz eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Capitalism has served the U.S. well, and as the other posts have pointed out, so has a fair amount of regulation and government intervention.  I am in favor of a consumer-driven market, in which the products, goods, and services are driven and influenced by the consumers and business owners, rather than the government trying to dictate what people need or want. 

When I taught history, I used to use the example of toilet paper to illustrate the differences between capitalism and communism: toilet paper in the U.S.? soft, white, even available with aloe, if you wanted it; toilet paper in the U.S.S.R.? pretty much non-existent for most folks.  It just wasn't a priority for the government to produce it. 

e-martin eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I agree with the positive opinions on capitalism aligned with egalitarianism.

Principles of freedom are inherent in capitalism, as an economic philosophy, but the dangers of imbalance and concentrated economic power are also inherent to the notion of pure capitalism. 

In my opinion, capitalism needs regulation to be truly "good" but with rules to curb avarice capitalism can be a very positive economic system. 

pohnpei397 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Definitely.  I don't believe in completely unchecked capitalism, but I also don't think that it is very logical to believe in anything other than capitalism these days.  It seems clear that the countries that are the most capitalist are the ones that do the best while places like Spain and Greece that have too much government intervention in the economy tend to suffer.

litteacher8 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Yes, I do think that governments should not completely control the economy.  However, I do not think that there should be a combination of regulation and lack of regulation, because that's how we end up in the mess we are in now.

luiji | Student

Definitely. It's much better than communism or fascism - we know what comes from them. Life is a lot fairer for those under capitalism, although it does sometimes have its weaknesses

discussion1984 | Student

That's fair enough--maybe. I wonder when the editors are going to stop changing my titles.