July 31, 2009

Why True Capitalism and Anarchy Don't Exist, Or, Why We Should Let the Government Regulate a Little

Anarchy is, simply put, the absence of any rule or regulation. Some would label the capitalistic economic system anarchic (I won't call it our system because we, of course, don't live in a society of strict capitalism, contrary to popular opinion). After all, pure capitalism leaves no room for regulation or rules or laws, does it? The rich and enterprising grow richer and are not mandated to help the poor; they have no obligation apart from their own humanity to feel compassion.

But even if we did, we could never escape some kind of regulation...

In every society and every economic system there is a leader, and there are followers; there is an optimal life, and there are less than optimal lives; there are things that must be done, and rules that must be obeyed. In a world of true capitalism one would always end up applying the always-useful old-fashioned dog-eat-dog code. This code would serve as a primitive form of law. In other words, capitalism cannot be anarchic because someone always triumphs, and the triumphant all too often form a sort of governing body. And governing bodies, in one way or another, always regulate...

What I mean to say is that there is no true anarchy, and there is no true capitalism. Capitalism and anarchy both are like most ideological things: somewhat beautiful and ruthless but forever unattainable.

Perhaps if both are so unattainable it would be better for us to stop striving for them. By which I mean to say that many Americans nowadays wish for the good old days back when the government didn't regulate the economy or even the very, very good very, very old days back when we all threw tea into the ocean to get rid of government regulation of the economy- but these wishes are useless, because attempting to find a system (even a capitalist system) with no regulation is impossible. Someone will always rule; we will always be regulated. That someone regulating us might as well be our good old elected officials, instead of the highest bidder.

Therefore, maybe we should all stop complaining about government regulation and instead find a way to make it work. I would suggest finding out the details; I am of course referring to our great government's latest attempt at regulating health care. I think you knew that because that's all anyone talks about these days, that and Michael Jackson.

So. Don't moan about how this country's losing its edge to socialism; if you want to do something useful, write a letter to your Congressperson and try and find us the most recent copy of that health care plan!

Or, write a letter to the Webster's Dictionary people letting them know that, solely for the purposes of general morale and not letting the American public subscribe to pipe dreams, they should delete "capitalism" and "anarchy" from the dictionary.


  1. Nenglish11:40 AM

    This screams fallacy.

    God cannot be proven and most people find reason to doubt so just get over it and get the latest copy of the Atheist bible. Your reasoning is that we should not reason. We should drop our opinions and are morals.

    Another flaw in your argument is history shows that true Communism/Socialism is not attainable...

    Therefore you should stop complaining about poor people and unequality because they will never go away...

    If your argument is true then we should stop living altogether or embrace the inevitable doom of society because we will forever be locked in to mediocrity and lack of self-improvement.

    I challenge you to re-evaluate your arguments...especially such bold statements such as these.


  2. Nenglish,

    ...Did I mention God? I don't think that has any relevance whatsoever to my argument. Incidentally, I love morality and opinions... Why would I ever give them up?

    Of course true communism and socialism aren't attainable. That's just human nature at work again. No perfect system is attainable. That's my point... that we'll never reach true capitalism, and it's perfectly acceptable and necessary to let a little socialism creep in.

    And regardless of what you say, I will never stop advocating for the poor and I will never stop fighting inequality. The difficulty or even impossibility of an important task is no reason to stop working toward the completion of that task! Don't be heartless. Instead of giving up on the poor, we should help! We can at least shrink the effects of poverty and better more than a few lives.

    Also, I didn't say anything about the doom of society or the inevitability of mediocrity. You've completely misread my argument. I'm not advocating apathy.

    I'm saying that we should stop trying to preserve true capitalism and start realizing that a little bit of socialism isn't the worst thing in the world. A little bit of socialism may be the only way to preserve our nation.

    The "bold statements" you accuse me of making have very little truth to them. Please, reevaluate your own.

  3. "Perhaps if both are so unattainable it would be better for us to stop striving for them." Yeah, that makes a lot of sense. I would go on to say that we Homo Sapiens should stop pretending to be what we are not and denying what we are. We are still pack animals. A certain segment of our population has a drive to dominate. As such, like you say, there will always be rules imposed by those needing to exert control. We could abolish our existing government. It would be replaced by numerous smaller groups, more like a feudal system. The same constant fights among the groups would ensue that ensued in prior times until we all decide that a central government frees up our lives to pursue other more productive endeavors. So, maybe what we need to do is abolish our governments every few centuries just so we can see why we created them to begin with.

  4. Good Afternoon,

    I was doing a bit of research on the concept of True Capitalism and came across this post. I believe that this post ascribes too quickly to the idea that current nation states are ultimate givens.

    I submit here for consideration the idea that far from being unattainable, Capitalism and Anarchy simply are ultimate givens within which the current system of nation states are the prevalent defense agencies in their geographical region.

    It is possible, yet expensive, to choose amongst which nation state one will submit to. Revolutions are extreme reactions to poor customer service. This is a view of the current state of affairs through a lens. This reality is not always percieved but is evident in the manner with which nation states negotiate amongst themselves and with corporations.

    The term anarchy is generally as you mention it, the absence of regulation. This is also misunderstood. Anarchy is simply the absence of government. It does not imply that rules and regulations would be banished, rather, rules and regulations would emerge between individuals and groups of individuals who voluntarily consent and abide by them.

    As for Anarchy not existing, it is true that there will always be rules and regulations. The difference is that instead of being under cumpulsion to submit to rules and regulation, the idea is that persons voluntarily consent to live by such rules and regulations within a territory or within a certain social sphere.

    I welcome any debate on this subject.