What’s Right: Capitalism Runs Through Our Veins

Marc Moreira, Maroon-News Staff

The current race for Democrats to nominate someone for President of the United States has resulted in a split between the moderate and progressive wing of the Democratic Party. From these divisions, we can see many of the Democratic candidates essentially arguing over the merits of capitalism versus the merits of the socialism that progressives such as Senators Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and Bernie Sanders (I-VT) are pushing for. However, as President Donald Trump and members of the media have pointed out, socialism should not be the economic pathway for America’s future. Socialism is inherently economically stifling and would lead to an overall weakened America in the long-term.

Besides the fact that some Democrats are seemingly embracing socialism, Republicans are fighting off socialism because of how contrary to conservatism it is. A core belief of conservative governance is the idea that the government, whose primary role should be to ensure the rights of the people are not infringed upon and should remain as small and limited as possible. The massive increase in governance required to enforce new socialist programs would inevitably lead to more government interference in the lives of individual citizens.

In terms of economic policy, socialism’s inability to reward competition and progress would certainly be problematic. In America’s hyper-capitalist society, both companies and individuals are driven to innovate and use their talents in a manner that will be most economically profitable in a free market. However, socialism rewards individuals for mediocrity by giving underachieving individuals welfare through the form of government programs, such as higher minimum wage and unemployment benefits.

Not to mention, the free market system, although flawed in some regards, does a much better job allocating skilled laborers to different jobs than a centralized, socialist government could. This efficiency can be seen most clearly in the Canadian health care system apparently lacking the ability to provide adequate, reliable and speedy health care for its citizens. The large bureaucracy involved in public health care in Canada has pushed individuals to seek private, more expensive coverage.

If socialism was not as toxic as it is in today’s political atmosphere, Senator Warren would not make comments such as, “capitalism runs through my veins.” In other words, Warren understands that in order for her government programs to work, she will need to rely on capitalism, competition and profit revenue to fund them. As Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi has agreed, capitalism is the best economic system for America.

A majority of Americans understand that adopting an economically socialist platform would be debilitating. According to a poll from The Hill, over 64 percent of registered democrats said that they would refuse to vote for a self-described socialist in the 2020 election, which is even higher than the 59 percent of democrats who were opposed to socialist candidates in the 2016 election. With that said, there is still an argument to be made that just because something is not politically viable does not mean it is not a good choice. However, this platform is an exception. The reality is that disillusioned politicians trying to embrace unpayable government programs will be in for a rude awakening when America does not come to the polls to support them and gives Trump another term.