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Flaws of Free-Market Capitalism

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Austen posted on Mon, May 14 2012 7:44 PM

What, if any, flaws do you think free-market capitalism has?

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Um, that's not a very specific question. It's kind of like asking "What, if any, flaws do you think the heliocentric model has?" The correct answer: none that we know of.

Praxeological science is not normative - it doesn't say "people ought to be capitalists" it says "here are the rules that determine the social outcomes when people behave this way or that way, respectively." If you centrally-plan an economy with an iron fist, you will have under- and over-production, starvation and eventually population collapse. This has nothing to do with whether we ought to have capitalism or not. It's like saying if you shoot a rocket at the right speed and angle, it will orbit the earth. That doesn't tell you whether you ought to launch such a rocket, only what will happen if you do.

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Um, that's not a very specific question. It's kind of like asking "What, if any, flaws do you think the heliocentric model has?" The correct answer: none that we know of.

Praxeological science is not normative - it doesn't say "people ought to be capitalists" it says "here are the rules that determine the social outcomes when people behave this way or that way, respectively." If you centrally-plan an economy with an iron fist, you will have under- and over-production, starvation and eventually population collapse. This has nothing to do with whether we ought to have capitalism or not. It's like saying if you shoot a rocket at the right speed and angle, it will orbit the earth. That doesn't tell you whether you ought to launch such a rocket, only what will happen if you do.

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These

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Clayton replied on Tue, May 15 2012 12:40 AM

FoTH - Wow, you couldn't recommend a worse source. I made it through all of three sentences in the first FAQ.

1) It's a strawman - most people on this forum don't even self-identify as anarcho-capitalist

2) It's a non-sequitir - the OP asked about free market capitalism, not anarcho-capitalism (yes, they are different)

3) It's shit-for-brains - the author is seriously debating whether people who believe in property rights can merit the label "anarchist". Srsly?

4) I couldn't take it any more, I'd rather watch 10 hours of Mr. Trololo:

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Clayton:
I couldn't take it any more, I'd rather watch 10 hours of Mr. Trololo

I actually sort of like that song.

 

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The massive wealth it creates attracts parasites.

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I actually sort of like that song.

It's strangely attracting. I'm quite sure I would go absolute bonkers after about 1 hour of it, though, let alone 10 hours. CIA could break me in no time with this combined with sensory deprivation and maybe a little truth serum. I'd be giving them the password to anything they wanted, even if I didn't know it.

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No, you'd just be telling them that you're very glad, because you're finally returning home. cheeky

Is it bad that I play the Trololo song in my head sometimes?

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Clayton:
It's strangely attracting. I'm quite sure I would go absolute bonkers after about 1 hour of it, though, let alone 10 hours. CIA could break me in no time with this combined with sensory deprivation and maybe a little truth serum. I'd be giving them the password to anything they wanted, even if I didn't know it.

Imo this is the best 10 hour video on Youtube for interrogation purposes:

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FoTH - Wow, you couldn't recommend a worse source. I made it through all of three sentences in the first FAQ.

1) It's a strawman - most people on this forum don't even self-identify as anarcho-capitalist

2) It's a non-sequitir - the OP asked about free market capitalism, not anarcho-capitalism (yes, they are different)

Maybe this section would be more approriate then. Though really criticisms of free-market capitalism are sprinkled across the FAQ.

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Austen:

What, if any, flaws do you think free-market capitalism has?

Free market capitalism is certainly the fairest system. Is it perfect? That depends on the end result of perfection. In the sense that everybody would have enough to live, no; there will always be invalids, for instance, who need others, and there will always be cases where nobody will be willing to take care of them. However, thinking as a utilitarian, free market capitalism is the best way for the most people to become wealthy and be happy. However, if fairness is the only consideration for perfection, then yes, it is perfect.

If I had to detect a practical flaw, I would say that any form of currency could conceivably run out. Being that the dollar ought to be based on some tangible standard, the standard would eventually run out if society continues to expand. There is, after all, only so much precious metal on earth. Certainly the standard isn't limited to gold, but thinking abstractly, I would say it's a potential weakness. Otherwise, it would ultimately boil down to bartering, so it's not an imperfection in the system, just in the way it is currently considered (involving currency).

As for a matter of identity, the link someone posted below sums something up very well about these proclaimed anarcho-capitalists: "Opposition to government is a necessary but not sufficient condition for being an anarchist -- you also need to be opposed to exploitation and capitalist private property. As "anarcho"-capitalists do not consider interest, rent and profits (i.e. capitalism) to be exploitative nor oppose capitalist property rights, they are not anarchists." http://anarchism.pageabode.com/afaq/secF1.html I never understood why so many people on here claim to be anarchists. I'm not one, and anarchy is a stupid idea, frankly. It can't work for very long despite what the idealists on here claim.

 

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Re: "Anarchist FAQ"

Is that the same crap from here?  Covered that here.

 

Re: Trololo

How do you stand it?  I can't watch anything non-English that doesn't provide subtitles.

 

And you're both wrong.  Epic sax guy is the best:

 

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triknighted:

 

<iframe width="420" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/WG60-0tp5sU" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>

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