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Monday, 2 October 2017


Politics - Capitalism

  • The economic system under which the ownership of the means of production is concentrated in the hands of a class, consisting of only a minor section of society, and under which there is a property less class for whom the sale of their labor power, as a commodity is the only source of livelihood. It is not necessarily coincidental with free enterprise, in the nineteenth century, especially in England, the new factory industries repeatedly demanded free access to markets and to labor supplies, but by the beginning of the twentieth century there was a tendency towards monopolies in different industries and a growing demand for state protection against foreign competition, under capitalism, as above defined the means of production and the apparatus of distribution are controlled by private owners who run them at their discretion, driven by an urge for profit. Such a system has often been attached by Socialists, who aim to under central management, the driving principle being not plan less anarchy leading, to recurrent crises because of its lack of coordination. Defenders of the capitalist system point to its great achievements. They claim that private initiative cannot be replaced by state control and that the interests of capitalism are necessarily identical with public welfare. According to Socialist theories there is an inward tendency in capitalism which leads to ever larger concentrations of capital, the stronger enterprises ousting or absorbing the weaker ones, until a limited number of trusts, combines and banks virtually controls a nation's economic life. Thus the liberal free competition, capitalism or former times, passes into modern monopolist capitalism. The letter foreshadows the state administration desired by Socialists, the enormous shareholders, who may have no interest in the businesses other then reliable sources of dividends. This development is sometimes called the managerial revolution, q.v. Free competition, say such critics, is in any case being gradually replaced by large combines and groups, which do a great deal of planning.



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