Capitalism is doomed. Is that a shocking statement? For me, it’s simply an obvious and logical statement.
Let’ s go with this simple definition of capitalism. “Capitalism is an economic and political system in which a country’s trade and industry are controlled by private owners for profit, rather than by the state.” The defining feature is that capitalism is for profit, and it is the main downfall of the system.
It is smart? is it for the betterment of society? Is it sustainable? Will it damage the environment in such a way as to limit or destroy life on Earth? None of these issues are considered in capitalism. In fact, in the capitalist system, if a company is not maximizing profits the shareholders can sue the board of directors to make them maximize profits whether or not it is good for the company in the long run or good for humans in general.
The capitalist system maintains wealth in the upper echelons of society. Shareholders invest in companies and thus promote the profit making and profit taking aspect of the company rather than its benevolent side. The capitalist system can turn a perfectly beneficial company into a pariah.
The capitalist system allowed the tobacco industry to lie and withhold important research from the public in order to make profit for the shareholders. The capitalist system has allowed petroleum companies to sell vast amounts of their product even though CO2 emissions from petroleum are the main driver of climate change.
It’s a stupid system. Either we kill capitalism or it will kill us. What will take its place? My guess is it will be a hybrid system that promotes initiative and creativity, while having checks and balances that maximize the chances of betterment for society.