Pursuit of Happiness Tuesday, Mar 16 2010 

“Capitalism as a way of thinking is fundamentally individualistic…the individual is the center of capitalist endeavor…that society is composed of individuals who pursue their own interests, that individuals should be free to pursue their own interests (this, in Capitalism, is called ‘economic freedom’” (Hooker).This economic freedom is a large part of Americans’ “unalienable” and constitutionally secured right to pursue happiness (Jefferson). Thucydides the Greek author is quoted; “The secret of happiness is freedom. The secret of freedom is courage.”America’s founders showed the courage to form a country with individual freedoms greater than those of any country previous; with those freedoms we have the right to pursue our own individual idea of happiness. America was founded on the principal of the sovereign individual,and the philosophy that each man seeking their individual success independently would combine to yield the highest standard of living and the most successful nation.To detach America and Capitalism would be destructive to the American way of life, detrimental to the American standard of living, deliberately unconstitutional and explicitly un-American.

Hooker, Richard. Issue Brief. The European Enlightenment Glossary. Web. 15 Feb. 2010.

Jefferson, Thomas. “Declaration of Independence.” Continental Congress. Proc. of Continental Congress, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Print.

Public Option Tuesday, Mar 9 2010 

How does a Government run Public Option fit into a free market economy? A public option as defined by wikipedia is, “a Qualified Health Benefit Plan competing with similar private insurance plans… enabling citizens and small businesses to purchase health insurance meeting the minimum federal standard.” Capitalism generally supports competition, however not when the federal or state governments are taking part. Rather, Capitalism supports privatized competition. When the government enters the business arena all loses are footed by tax payers rather than shareholders. Also the Government has an unfair advantage over privatized competitions; the government has the power to make the laws that all competitors must abide by.  In addition the government doesn’t have an incentive motive for running their business efficiently. If a competitor is inefficient with their business they lose profits if the federal government is inefficient they have the ability to raise taxes, the superior funding of the U.S. government allows public health care to lower prices, and ultimately put all competition out of business, leading to a government takeover of what was once one sixth of the private sector. Many in support of a Public Option justify it by citing the constitutional right to care for ones health and arguing the government’s main objective is to, “secure our natural rights.” To this arugement Paul Ryan retorts, “the right to care for one’s health does not imply that government must provide health care, any more than our right to eat, in order to live, requires government to own the farms and raise the crops.”

Said best by Ryan, “Government’s constitutional obligations in regard to protecting such rights are normally met by establishing the conditions for free markets—markets which historically provide an abundance of goods and services, at an affordable cost, for the largest number. When free markets seem to be failing to meet this goal—and I would argue that the delivery of health care today is an example of where this is the case—government, rather than seeking to supply the need itself, should look to see if its own interventions are the root of the problem, and should make adjustments to unleash competition and choice.”

Capitalism was to designed to run itself, more or less, if it needs help the government should be there to steer rather than joining the race to win.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Public_health_insurance_option

Ryan, Paul. Imprimis. Hillsdale, MI: Hillsdale College, 2010. Print.

Restrictions v. Laissez- faire (America) Tuesday, Feb 23 2010 

America operates and has operated under a modified free-enterprise economy since our country was established. The term “Laissez-faire” comes from the French for  “let it be” or “leave it alone”, in reference to state intervention in industry. The modification of the “free-enterprise”  refers to state issued restrictions on trade, which obviously contradicts the Laissez-faire principals. Recently, with the current economic recession, the amount of freedom alloted to domestic enterprises has been drawn into question. Many Americans believe the lax in banking regulation and irresponsible capitalism were the largest contributors to the current economic crisis. Very few, if any, politicians believe America should practice Laissez-faire capitalism. The single issue that most directly indicates where ones lies on the fiscal spectrum from Republican to Democratic; the amount of state regulation the government should apply to US industry.

Those arguing for less regulation beleive that regualtion “raises the cost of doing business and reduces job growth” and that increasing tariffs, ” A tax imposed on a product when it is imported into a country”, “reduces the variety of consumer goods while limiting the potential markets of exporters.”

While those in favor of increased government regulation of the finical sector argue, “deregulation, specifically of the financial sector, that has brought us to this denouement. Better regulation would have prevented the housing bubble and its subsequent collapse.” They also believe, “Banks would not be sitting on unknown amounts of bad loans had regulators been empowered to control their activities. Unwitting borrowers would not have been enticed to purchase homes beyond their means absent unscrupulous real estate agents and mortgage brokers.”

http://www.investorwords.com/4877/tariff.html

http://economics.about.com/od/beyondeconomics/a/review.htm

http://www.realclearmarkets.com/articles/2008/09/the_choice_capitalism_or_regul.html

The Fundamental Concept of the Individual Wednesday, Feb 17 2010 

The first form of “capitalism” developed along trade routes in the Middle East and in Rome. This form of Capitalism is often refereed to as Mercantilism: buying or making a good and selling  it at a price that yields a profit. “Capitalism as a way of thinking is fundamentally individualistic…the individual is the center of capitalist endeavor…that society is composed of individuals who pursue their own interests, that individuals should be free to pursue their own interests (this, in capitalism, is called “economic freedom”  This Concept of individual incentive has proved successful historically in american culture. The Belief define capitalism states “individuals pursuing their own interests will guarantee the interests of society as a whole.”   Economic Historian, Richard Hooker points out the materialism that a capitalist culture depends on, “In non-capitalist societies, such as tribal societies, people have real social relations to the producers of the goods they consume. But when people no longer have social relations with others who make the objects they consume, that means that the only relation they have is with the object itself. So part of capitalism as a way of thinking is that people become “consumers,” that is, they define themselves by the objects they purchase rather than the objects they produce.” Its certainly evident we live in a culture focused on the individual, a Materialistic culture, a capitalistic culture, the question is, ” is there a better alternative?”

http://www.wsu.edu/~dee/GLOSSARY/CAPITAL.HTM

The Case for Capitalism Friday, Feb 12 2010 

In the closing of my senior year at PHS I intend to research and present, “The Case for Capitalism.” Capitalism has been under attack recently from sources from Micheal Moore to the film Avatar. Both Michael Moore and the folks behind Avatar have made out like bandits with the funds accrued from their jabs at American capitalism. I am very interested in the economics of the free market and plan to major in Marketing Management. I intend to find answers to the questions concerning the economic system in which our country operates, and present them in an intelligent manner.

What is Capitalism Tuesday, Feb 9 2010 

From an Economic standpoint capitalism is,

“An economic system in which the means of production and distribution are privately or corporately owned and development is proportionate to the accumulation and reinvestment of profits gained in a free market.” (Source: Dictionary.com) From a social standpoint capitalsim is defined as,  “A social system based on the principle of individual rights.”(Source: Capitalism.org) Capitalism is both social and ecoconimic and without the social definition of capitalism a country cannot successfully practice the economic definition of capitalism. Capitalism can only exist with individual property rights. Under a capitalistic economy price is derived from supply and demand. A good costs whatever a seller and a buyer agree upon. This is contrary to communist and socialist systems where the government can determine the pricing of goods or services. A capitalistic economy defends the rights of the individual, making it different than any other economic system. Capitalism is not only an economic system but a moral system. “Capitalism should be defended vigorously on a moral basis, not an economic or utilitarian basis.”

http://www.importanceofphilosophy.com/Politics_Capitalism.html

America Backing Off Friday, Jan 22 2010 

As America backs off from the once embraced Capitalism, others have stepped up to take our place. “It seems that many nations in the developing world have themselves been investing in R&D and education and are now driving their own periods of economic expansion, resulting in increasingly knowledgeable work forces that can compete for jobs that were once limited to the United States and the developed world” (The Capitalist Business Model).  The website continued: our past “national strategy of competitiveness…promoting R&D across all sectors of the economy” (The Capitalist Business Model) had served us well in the nineteen eighties and nineties. Arguing Capitalistic business strategies, “[created] over 35 million new jobs, spawned an entirely new information technology sector, produced the longest period of economic expansion in its history, and spread a higher standard of living throughout much of the world” (The Capitalist Business Model).  As taxes and regulation on businesses increase the number of competitors in each industry will decrease. That competition is was keeps prices low and businesses innovative and efficient. Competition keeping businesses productive might seem trivial but, “Productivity is important because the higher it is, the lower the prices, the greater the output, the higher the return on capital, the higher the wages, and the greater the chance a business has of surviving” (Penn), therefore it’s imperative to you that productivity is imperative to them. Capitalism is obviously beneficial to people from a consumer standpoint: forcing companies to compete against each other: lowering prices, working convenient hours and all around catering to your consumer wants and needs.

“”The Capitalist Business Model – Efficiency and Innovation”” KLM, Inc. Management Consultation. Web. 3 Mar. 2010. <http://www.klminc.com/strategic_thinking/cap-biz-model.html&gt;.

Penn, Mary S. “How Productivity Benefits from Competition.” Chicago Booth News. The University of Chicago Booth School of Business, 3 Mar. 2010. Web. 27 Mar. 2010.

Chavez on Capitalism Tuesday, Jan 12 2010 

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez, one of the world’s most vocal opponents of capitalism, delivered some absolute gems in anti Capitalism sentiment last month. Chavez is quoted as saying, “Socialism, the other ghost that is probably wandering around this room, that’s the way to save the planet, capitalism is the road to hell.”  When delivering a speech in Copenhagen, Denmark Chavez said,“Seven percent of the world population – some 500 million people – are responsible for half of contaminating emissions. Capitalism is to blame for this..let’s fight against capitalism and make it obey us.” Chavez provided no evidence of any kind to back up his claims. It’s obvious that some feel capitalism leads to pollution and an inferior to the second most popular economic system socialism.

http://blog.heritage.org/2009/12/17/chavez-on-climate-change-blame-capitalism/