Capitalism Today – Is it a Race to the Bottom?

There is not a single day when people, from the top tier to the bottom, do not complain about capitalism is America today. Capitalism has changed enormously over the past couple of decades. Has it broken? What has happened to this fountain of growth and money that’s causing so much irritation among people from the Wall Street to the common man earning an average income?

What is Capitalism?

Capitalism is a political and economic system where there is a strict control of the trade and industry of a country in the hands of private owner for profit and not by the state. There are private enterprises, private ownership and privatized industries.

Modern Capitalism

Capitalism today has shifted from the trade of actual goods to the money markets and financial systems. Thus, trading in derivatives gives more profits than trading in commodities. This phenomenon works well for the developed world, only a small percentage of it though. The rest of the world argues that it does work well but with taxpayers bailing you out when things go wrong simply means that the risk today has shifted from corporation to the state, or more simply to the common man. Manufacturing has changed too. There is a fundamental shift in where we make things. Most of the manufacturing today is outsourced to China and India. Garments are made in Bangladesh and so on. There is a reduction in the income from the manufacturing industry. This ultimately leads to deficits that are funded by the government through borrowing. For the common man, this means land grabs, decimation of fish stocks, massive waste, poisoning of land, pollution, illegal dumping, fraud, removal of workers’ rights and much more.

Good capitalism, a fair and effective way of trading, is definitely broken today which is making a small elite class incredibly rich while the poor getting poorer.

Is Capitalism Still Alive?

Capitalism is still alive today based on profession, innovation, competition and advancement. Rewards come to those who take risks. However, for a common man, capitalism is based on mathematics and not on trade. Odds are stacked in favor of big financial institutions, investment banks, Ponzi schemers and power brokers. Thus, the income is made to revolve around the people who make this system.

Market inefficiencies such as fraud, greed and manipulation are usually not factored in this debate. With the market in surplus of fraudulent activities, the problem has become huge for the average income group. The impact of today’s capitalism on the common man is something that is just a race to the bottom.

In simple terms, capitalism works only for the capitalist. The problem here is that 90%  of the people in America are not capitalists. They are common men, employees, small business owners and people earning an average income. This has made it difficult for them to survive in the modern capitalistic environment with an absence of morality that impacts most of the people in an environment that seems like a race to the bottom.

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