Nice post by Mark defending capitalism over socialism, while underscoring the need for sound regulation in any capitalist model.
… state enterprises lack the forces of evolution that apply in a capitalist economy - state enterprises are rarely if ever allowed to fail. And hence bad ideas are perpetuated indefinitely, and an economy becomes dysfunctional to the point of systemic collapse. It is the fact that private enterprises fail which keeps industries vibrant. The tension between the imperative to innovate and the consequences of failure drives capitalist economies to evolve quickly.
Despite all of the nasty consequences that we have seen, and those we have yet to see, of capitalism gone wrong, I am still firmly of the view that society must tap into its capitalist strengths if it wants to move forward.
But I chose my words carefully when I said “regulated capitalism”. I used to be a fan of Adam Smith’s invisible hand, and great admirer of Ayn Rand’s vision. Now, I feel differently. Left to it’s own devices, the market will tend to reinforce the position of those who were successful in the past, at the exclusion of those who might create future successes. We see evidence of this all the time. The heavyweights that define an industry tend to do everything in their power to prevent innovation from changing the rules that enrich them.