Skip to comments.Is Capitalism Dead, or Simply Dying?
Posted on 04/20/2012 7:32:18 AM PDT by Kaslin
Noted financial author Richard Duncan says Capitalism is Dead, Credit New King.
The world needs to clue in to changes to its economic system, including the death of capitalism, according to noted financial author Richard Duncan, who warns that attempts to turn back the clock on our credit-driven economies could be cataclysmic
Recognizing that the world operates on a different set of rules from the laissez-faire capitalism of the 19th century is among the key arguments in Duncans 2012 book, The New Depression: The Breakdown of the Paper Money Economy.
Stuck with Creditism
Duncan sees the global economy as having undergone a fundamental transformation during the past 43 years. Since changes in 1968 that freed the Federal Reserve from holding physical gold in reserve against dollars in circulation, total global credit has expanded 50 times, or from about $1 trillion to $50 trillion in 2007.
Over that period, credit creation and consumption, or what Duncan calls creditism, took hold as the growth dynamic behind the global economy, displacing capitalism, which he says relied upon sound money, hard work and capital accumulation.
Attempts to break the global economys reliance on credit creation as a driver and reboot back to earlier ways wont work, said Duncan, who sees sound money policy recommendations as a recipe for disaster.
Duncan believes that true capitalism died in 1914, when nations across Europe abandoned gold-backed currencies, running up huge deficits in preparation for what would come to be known as the Great War.
Im recommending making use of this new economic system. Borrow money at the government level at very low interest rates and then invest that money and change our world for the better. Duncan said.
Building a national solar-energy grid that could tap the arid landscapes of Nevada are among Duncans recommendations.
Duncan said he first outlined his thinking on government-led investment in a 2008 book. On speaking tours, he encountered the greatest push-back from free-market, libertarian thinkers who are skeptical of government involvement in the economy.
He says many libertarians are with me along through the argument on causes of the global crisis, but that they tend to be very surprised by his conclusion that part of the solution requires governments to spend more not less. Monetary Madness
Duncan is yet another author who predicted a financial crisis but whose solutions can only be described as monetary madness.
"Glutted with excess industrial capacity and a banking system laden with massive loans that will never be paid back, China faces difficult decisions much as Japan did" says Duncan.
Then like an economic madman, Duncan wants the US government to undertake massive infrastructure projects just like the ones that bankrupted Japan and China's State-Owned-Enterprises (SOEs).
Obama's Excursions Into Clean Energy
Look at Obama's backing of Green Energy companies Ener1, Solyndra Inc., and Beacon Power, all three now bankrupt as noted in Another Obama-Backed Green Energy Company Goes Bankrupt.
Solar Energy Madness in Europe
In an effort to spur solar energy in France, Germany, Spain and other European countries, bureaucratic dunces decided to pay as much as 10 times market rates for those supplying energy to the power grid.
In response, farmers in France have started building "barns" that serve no other purpose than a place to put solar panels. Supermarkets put solar panels on their roofs and unused sections of parking lots.
It has been a boom to solar panel makers (China), but it is costing the French power company Electricite de France SA more than a billion euros ($1.3 billion) a year to meet government mandated pledges to accept solar energy from those supplying the grid.
At the end of 2010, EDF received 3,000 applications a day to connect panels to the grid. In 2008, the number of applications was 7,100 for the entire year.
The results should have been easy to predict in advance, but you can never explain anything to economic illiterates interfering in the free markets hoping to make things better. They never do.
For more details, please consider EDFs Solar Time Bomb Will Tick On After France Pops Bubble
Is Capitalism Dead?
If capitalism is dead, it is because socialists, fascists, bureaucratic fools, and central-planner advocates like Duncan destroyed it via foolish proposals to improve on it.
The idea that governments can invest wisely in technology, at reasonable costs, and the free market cannot is downright absurd as the US, Japan, China, and Europe have proven in spades. In short, Duncan has lost his mind.
Purely passive income is not really capitalism, as the article suggests. “Investors” who only live to loan money or buy sucurities or futures contribute NOTHING to add value or productivity.
The govt prints money out of thin air, GIVES it to banks etc., and expects the lowly serfs and peons to WORK their asses off for it. Sounds like slavery more than anything else.
Non-value added tax should apply to purely passive, speculative income, IMHO.
What a question, we haven seen a true Free market, capitalist system since the late 1800, early 1900! Our system has been hijacked by the politicos and has been morphed into a socialistic fascist hybrid. If only we have a True Capitalistic system there would be no limit to the heights human exists could reach.
Not for long.
Being strangled by the black muslim commie in the white hut. Next question.
Who is John Galt?
Capitalism is a term applied by it’s enemies. It really never is born, nor does it die. It’s what humans do, to the extent that the sovereigns permit it.
IOW's let Obama, or any other occupant in the White House, run the economy as he sees fit? No thanks!
“Who is John Galt?”
Or where is John Galt?
One major factor that is killing capitalism is “crony capitalism”. The government is in bed with big corporations and the banks. With this cabal picking winners and losers, it is amazing that any entrepreneurs can still take their new idea and succeed.
Foolishly, we thought that capitalism was ours. We thought we owned it, controlled it and could use it as our slave in perpetuity. We're now discovering that the reverse is actually true. Now it has little use for our cities, our communities and our people, all that remains is rust and ruins.
"You have meddled with the primal forces of nature, Mr. Beale, and I won't have it! Is that clear? You think you've merely stopped a business deal. That is not the case! The Arabs have taken billions of dollars out of this country, and now they must put it back! It is ebb and flow, tidal gravity! It is ecological balance!
You are an old man who thinks in terms of nations and peoples. There are no nations. There are no peoples. There are no Russians. There are no Arabs. There are no third worlds. There is no West. There is only one holistic system of systems, one vast and immane, interwoven, interacting, multivariate, multinational dominion of dollars. Petro-dollars, electro-dollars, multi-dollars, reichmarks, rins, rubles, pounds, and shekels. It is the international system of currency which determines the totality of life on this planet. That is the natural order of things today. That is the atomic and subatomic and galactic structure of things today! And YOU have meddled with the primal forces of nature, and YOU... WILL... ATONE!
Am I getting through to you, Mr. Beale? You get up on your little twenty-one inch screen and howl about America and democracy. There is no America. There is no democracy. There is only IBM, and ITT, and AT&T, and DuPont, Dow, Union Carbide, and Exxon. Those are the nations of the world today. What do you think the Russians talk about in their councils of state, Karl Marx? They get out their linear programming charts, statistical decision theories, minimax solutions, and compute the price-cost probabilities of their transactions and investments, just like we do.
We no longer live in a world of nations and ideologies, Mr. Beale. The world is a college of corporations, inexorably determined by the immutable bylaws of business. The world is a business, Mr. Beale. It has been since man crawled out of the slime. And our children will live, Mr. Beale, to see that... perfect world... in which there's no war or famine, oppression or brutality. One vast and ecumenical holding company, for whom all men will work to serve a common profit, in which all men will hold a share of stock. All necessities provided, all anxieties tranquilized, all boredom amused."
Obama is holding a pillow on its face.
Capitalism will be just fine when people start loving freedom more than the chains of oppression. Our government has promised far more than it can ever provide and the remaining producers are fleeing the oppression. When the system collapses so will the power of the socialists. We will know recovery is on the way when being a Public School Teacher defines a criminal offense. Capitalists will survive and will again pledge together their lives and fortunes to build a free nation. We may not live to see it, but it is in the very nature of man.
Capitalism is simply reality. It doesn’t live or die. Its the real world and its human nature.
A people either let it flow naturally, or a people try to divert it, block, or change it for whatever reasons, with all kinds of unintended consequences.
You either live in accord with the real world, or you don’t - and you suffer the consequences.
That’s well put. Capitalism IS in the nature of man, and it endures and flourishes even in the face of socialism and oppression. It will just flourish a hell of a lot more when the socialist and oppressors are kicked to the curb!
A belief in “variability” is not often cited as a tenet of Conservatism, but it is. Whether it’s meat or money, some have always had more, some less, and it is man’s inherent nature to acquire greater wealth and the things it can provide. Attempts to spread the wealth around fly in the face of who and what we are, and our competitive spirit will win out in the end.
We've done pretty good since 1914. Entrepreneurship has taken off. Capital markets have developed. Buying and selling of business has reached new levels.
I don't see capitalism as dead at all. I see some government corruption and overreaching.
You cannot kill capitalism... it exists everywhere... even in the most communist forms of government.
Just like you cannot remove from a person his/her desire for freedom, you cannot remove from a person the desire to accumulate wealth and trade that wealth for goods and services.
To say that capitalism is dead or non-existent is like saying freedom is dead or non-existent. And yet, even in places like China or Cuba, you will always find it. It may take different forms, and it may be that only the highest social classes will have the most freedom to exercise it openly, but it will still be there. Even for the poor and the oppressed, capitalism is impossible to eliminate. We call it the black market.
It is not that capitalism is dead... or dying.
It is that tyranny is rampant.
Capitalism is not the issue, it’s about who controls the Capital. Even Communism is a form of Capitalism, “State Capitalism.”
.the other, you get to do the job assigned to you by a govt which will naturally favor its party members...thus, no one will really "work" or "achieve"...
today we have crony capitalism, where it's sort of a combination of the two.....you achieve wealth by favoritism and cooking the books and cheating.....
The idea that governments can invest wisely in technology, at reasonable costs, and the free market cannot is downright absurd as the US, Japan, China, and Europe have proven in spades.
However Obama&CO. think they can make it work,so far so bad.
It alll melt down to socialism.
Bizarre non-sequitur. "I'm dead; Victoria is still Queen" makes about as much sense.
Capitalism is the natural force of economics. The greatest incentive is to acquire tools and leverage opportunities to create wealth in a manner maximizing payoff balanced by the customer's desire to pay minimum cost. (Socialism etc. attempts to divert some of that profit at gunpoint. This too is a natural, albeit immoral a la "theft", force of economics.)
Credit is the new currency. Remember "bad money drives out good"? as in gold coin is driven out by exchangeable certificates which are driven out by identical-looking fiat certificates which are driven out by debit which is driven out by credit. Given the cornerstone of our currency being fiat-issued presidential portraits on paper, and with the rise of instant digital ledger cross-checking, the gov't is dispensing with the paper and just declaring virtual currency into existence. This virtual currency can only exist insofar as it can be traced daily all the way back to the Federal Reserve, which can only be done in the form of debt. Physical currency holds its own value as it is difficult to counterfeit; if you're holding a dollar bill, you have a dollar. Virtual currency has no inherit value, and cannot exist in the form of independent possession; as such, it can only exist by verifiable debt: you don't have a dollar per se, you have the credit of a dollar owed to someone else who [repeat chain] owes the Fed.
The two issues are independent. Capitalism does not ride on the form of currency, it just adapts [to] it. Capitalism continues unabated (witness the incredible success of Kickstarter.com); they're just operating on IOUs instead of little green pieces of paper.
You are taking the Marxist position. It's never truly passive investing, except maybe for US government bonds and then you have inflation risk.
The point of capitalism is to pool capital and take risks. You are always taking risks, whether it's with your time and money, or your money alone. Risk is the important factor in capitalism, not whether you are the general partner or a limited partner in the business.
I’m glad I read the article to the very end. I would think that the author would agree with me that capitalism is actually the default economic system, with variations being pressure from elites or powerful groups to control supply and demand. Whew.
I just love the way abortion is a choice, but I can’t buy a toilet that uses 4 gallons of water to flush.
Capitalism is not dead.......yet. It is being strangled by communist/socialist zombies intent on the destruction of this nation and if we don’t stop them hard and soon it will be dead.
Obama calls the coercive government "taking" and "spending" of citizens' hard-earned wages "redistribution" and "investment."
What most Americans call that process is taxing and spending.
The distinguishing feature of America's 200-year-old economic system was known by the Founders to be "freedom of individual enterprise," meaning people worked, they offered goods and services to others, and they earned income to be used by themselves and their families in exchange for goods and services likewise offered by other individuals. Their opportunities, innovation, and productivity benefited the entire society and the world--so much so that America literally went from a wilderness to the greatest economy in the world in a short period of time (read Edmund Burke's 1775 "Speech on Conciliation" for statistical analysis in that year).
On the other hand, the counterfeit ideas being imposed by this Administration have been tried and have failed to produce opportunity, freedom, and plenty in every society where they have been implemented.
See the following essay excerpted from "Our Ageless Constitution," a 292-page history of the ideas of liberty in America.
"Agriculture, manufactures, commerce, and navigation, the four pillars of our prosperity, are the most thriving when left most free to individual enterprise." - Thomas Jefferson
"The enviable condition of the people of the United States is often too much ascribed to the physical advantages of their soil & climate .... But a just estimate of the happiness of our country will never overlook what belongs to the fertile activity of a free people and the benign influence of a responsible government." - James Madison
America's Constitution did not mention freedom of enterprise per se, but it did set up a system of laws to secure individual liberty and freedom of choice in keeping with Creator-endowed natural rights. Out of these, free enterprise flourished naturally. Even though the words "free enterprise' are not in the Constitution, the concept was uppermost in the minds of the Founders, typified by the remarks of Jefferson and Madison as quoted above. Already, in 1787, Americans were enjoying the rewards of individual enterprise and free markets. Their dedication was to securing that freedom for posterity.
The learned men drafting America's Constitution understood history - mankind's struggle against poverty and government oppression. And they had studied the ideas of the great thinkers and philosophers. They were familiar with the near starvation of the early Jamestown settlers under a communal production and distribution system and Governor Bradford's diary account of how all benefited after agreement that each family could do as it wished with the fruits of its own labors. Later, in 1776, Adam Smith's INQUIRY INTO THE NATURE AND CAUSES OF THE WEALTH OF NATIONS and Say's POLITICAL ECONOMY had come at just the right time and were perfectly compatible with the Founders' own passion for individual liberty. Jefferson said these were the best books to be had for forming governments based on principles of freedom. They saw a free market economy as the natural result of their ideal of liberty. They feared concentrations of power and the coercion that planners can use in planning other peoples lives; and they valued freedom of choice and acceptance of responsibility of the consequences of such choice as being the very essence of liberty. They envisioned a large and prosperous republic of free people, unhampered by government interference.
The Founders believed the American people, possessors of deeply rooted character and values, could prosper if left free to:
Such a free market economy was, to them, the natural result of liberty, carried out in the economic dimension of life. Their philosophy tended to enlarge individual freedom - not to restrict or diminish the individual's right to make choices and to succeed or fail based on those choices. The economic role of their Constitutional government was simply to secure rights and encourage commerce. Through the Constitution, they granted their government some very limited powers to:
Adam Smith called it "the system of natural liberty." James Madison referred to it as "the benign influence of a responsible government." Others have called it the free enterprise system. By whatever name it is called, the economic system envisioned by the Founders and encouraged by the Constitution allowed individual enterprise to flourish and triggered the greatest explosion of economic progress in all of history. Americans became the first people truly to realize the economic dimension of liberty.
Footnote: Our Ageless Constitution, W. David Stedman & La Vaughn G. Lewis, Editors (Asheboro, NC, W. David Stedman Associates, 1987) Part III: ISBN 0-937047-01-5
True, but the main point is that the banks get money that is printed up out of thin air. If they lose it, they simply get bailed out.
It is this fiat money that is fueling Wall Street and all too many passive “investors”.
Drives up prices while working people get a swift kick in the and so on...
It is similair to the problem in France at one time when everyone was a renteur or whatever that word is. Everyone wanted to be a landlord. Here, everyone wants to be a passive “investor”.
The line between those powers granted to the government by the people in the constitution and those rights enumerated to the people in the bill of rights, define the perimeter of a small box. The government can exercise those limited powers within that small box. We the people have everything outside the box. The government can not exercise any power out of the box, we the people however can enter the box and do or act as the government to do that which is needed.
Capitalism isn’t the culprit, it’s corporatism and fascism hand in hand. Big government loves big business, because it’s easier to control fewer economic units, and the bribes are better. How could Obama control the decisions of 10 million entepreneurs?
Oh, and true capitalism optimizes profits, rather than maximizes. Don’t confuse hedge funds or what Romney does with capitalism.
Getting bailed out is not capitalism. Being the king's pet is another age old evil.
Everybody wants to get income without risk. We have a whole bunch here in the USA; they are called the 'retired'. Mostly, they retired on promises that can't be kept. That's not capitalism either, it is fraud.
Your complaint about passive investors is just nonsense or jealousy. The problem with renteurs in France wasn't with landlords who were renting out land they owned, but with folks who got sinecures from the government, or were granted monopoly rights.
A 'passive' investor takes risk and should be rewarded for it. Dragging fiat currency into the question is just a way to change the subject. The problem of too much fiat currency causing inflation is just another risk for which 'passive' investors should be rewarded.
Generally speaking, one pays higher capital gains on speculative income. If you don't hold stocks for a year capital gains are taxed at the investors tax rate. The same goes for flipping a house for profit..
“Creditism, Global Credit Economy,” “The Credit Expansion based Econoimes” of firsr world nations, “Global Economic Arbitrage”... all looks like stuff tsi guys has been writing about for some ten years now.
I heard his rap at the ASA back in 2004, Credit Economy theory - old stuff this. Heck, just check out that person’s linkedIn site - the list of work on this topic goes on and on and on....
No, the limits of credit expansion based economies is the ability to create enough new credit values as need to continue the debt payments (interest payments) on already existing debts. Hear this cat from SDSU present on this at the California sociologocal Association with a paper he called “Creditism Formula” back in 2004. I’ve followed him for some nine years now - “Creditism, Global Credit Economy,” “The Credit Expansion based Econoimes” of firsr world nations, “Global Economic Arbitrage”... all looks like stuff this guys has been writing about for about ten years. Here is one of his more early works:
I heard his rap at the ASA back in 2004 as well, Credit Economy theory - old stuff this. Heck, just check out that person’s linkedIn site - the list of work on this topic goes on and on and on....