Thursday, February 5, 2015

Capitalism Works Best When Shared

Lessons for Liberals and Conservatives alike. Too long I have witnessed a battle between America's Left and Right take place with neither side knowing who the true enemy is. Divide and conquer is the ultimate strategy in any controversy and when it comes to American politics pitting the left against Capitalists and the right against the ghost of Communism which died with the Berlin Wall has allowed the real enemy to seize control.

In 1914 an American conservative Capitalist and businessman named Henry Ford outraged Wall Street by paying assembly line workers 3 times the average factory wage, reduced the work day to 8 hours and established a 5 day work week to build Model Ts without being forced to do so by any labor union. It wasn't until 1941 that Ford Motor Company was unionized. Ford was the last American car manufacturer of dozens to be unionized. The Fascist Wall Street Journal branded him an economic criminal for treating factory workers so well.

You can fact check anything I've written here.

In 1914 the vast majority of American workers were putting in 12-14 hour days for less money than Henry Ford paid in 8 hours. It wasn't until 1937 that the  Fair Labor Standards Act established a 8 hour day, 40 hour week for most Americans and still many aren't included in 2015.

Doing so allowed Henry Ford's factory workers to buy Model Ts of their own with less than 4 months pay. Such treatment of factory workers was unheard of at the time. In less than 2 years, profits at Ford Motor Company had doubled and Ford had established itself as one of the leading automobile manufacturers in the world-- a position Ford still holds 100 years later.

Could you imagine being able to buy a new car today with only 4 months pay? Think how those workers' lives must have changed.

While Henry's heirs might not have understood as Henry understood, Henry Ford knew Capitalism worked best when shared. Ford employees bought most of Henry Ford's earliest Model T production at a time when employees of other automakers were walking to and from work because they couldn't afford to buy even the cheapest car in the world-- the Ford Model T.

Henry Ford's version of Capitalism-- true capitalism-- was in fact a form of what is now called paying it forward. Why was Henry so generous? It wasn't because he was a nice guy, Henry Ford was known to sometimes be ruthless. But Henry Ford understood true Capitalism and he understood and proved that by making his workers the most prosperous workers in the world it would all come right back into his greedy pockets.

Say what you like about Capitalists but remember, True Capitalists and True Capitalism is what built this country. Not that we haven't had far too many examples of Fascists mascaraing as Capitalists and Capitalists who just weren't very good at being Capitalists but show me your perfect system. Every single thing you own was made possible by Capitalism and there is no other means to make these things possible. Name any other approach and it has been tried and failed miserably.  That guy selling vegetables in the little shop downtown-- he's a capitalist. The guy selling dime bags on the corner-- he's a Capitalist. The girl who owns the coffee shop where you like to hang out and discuss your utopian world views-- she's a Capitalist. The old man selling Anarchist books in Glenwood-- he's a capitalist despite whatever he may want you to believe.

Unlike Fascism, Socialism, Communism, Democracy, Monarchy, Fiefdoms and every other form of government you can imagine Capitalism is not a form of government but is in fact a means of exchange. Barter is a form of Capitalism and like all Capitalism, Barter works best when it is shared, not horded. And Anarchy is no form of government at all. From Wikipedia:

"Capitalism is an economic system in which trade, industries, and the means of production are largely or entirely privately owned and operated for profit.[1][2] Central characteristics of capitalism include private property, capital accumulation, wage labour and, in many models, competitive markets.[3] In a capitalist economy, the parties to a transaction typically determine the prices at which assets, goods, and services are exchanged.[4]"

Now let's look at how Mussolini defined Fashism:

"Fascism, the more it considers and observes the future and the development of humanity quite apart from political considerations of the moment, believes neither in the possibility nor the utility of perpetual peace. It thus repudiates the doctrine of Pacifism -- born of a renunciation of the struggle and an act of cowardice in the face of sacrifice. War alone brings up to its highest tension all human energy and puts the stamp of nobility upon the peoples who have courage to meet it. All other trials are substitutes, which never really put men into the position where they have to make the great decision -- the alternative of life or death...."

Sound familiar? Is that not exactly the roll the US is playing in the world? Mussolini continues:

"...Fascism [is] the complete opposite of…Marxian Socialism, the materialist conception of history of human civilization can be explained simply through the conflict of interests among the various social groups and by the change and development in the means and instruments of production.... Fascism, now and always, believes in holiness and in heroism; that is to say, in actions influenced by no economic motive, direct or indirect. And if the economic conception of history be denied, according to which theory men are no more than puppets, carried to and fro by the waves of chance, while the real directing forces are quite out of their control, it follows that the existence of an unchangeable and unchanging class-war is also denied - the natural progeny of the economic conception of history. And above all Fascism denies that class-war can be the preponderant force in the transformation of society.... "

Sound familiar too? Deny the problems exist and they'll just go way despite overwhelming evidence to the contrary from even the most conservative of voices.  And this:

 "...iven that the nineteenth century was the century of Socialism, of Liberalism, and of Democracy, it does not necessarily follow that the twentieth century must also be a century of Socialism, Liberalism and Democracy: political doctrines pass, but humanity remains, and it may rather be expected that this will be a century of authority...a century of Fascism. For if the nineteenth century was a century of individualism it may be expected that this will be the century of collectivism and hence the century of the State....

The foundation of Fascism is the conception of the State, its character, its duty, and its aim. Fascism conceives of the State as an absolute, in comparison with which all individuals or groups are relative, only to be conceived of in their relation to the State. The conception of the Liberal State is not that of a directing force, guiding the play and development, both material and spiritual, of a collective body, but merely a force limited to the function of recording results: on the other hand, the Fascist State is itself conscious and has itself a will and a personality -- thus it may be called the "ethic" State.... "

Remember folks, this is the doctrine as promoted by Benito Amilcare Andrea Mussolini, Adolph Hitler, Senator Prescott Bush George Herbert Walker Bush, George W Bush and Barak Obama. Not one has deviated from American Imperialism. Benito continues:

"...The Fascist State organizes the nation, but leaves a sufficient margin of liberty to the individual; the latter is deprived of all useless and possibly harmful freedom, but retains what is essential; the deciding power in this question cannot be the individual, but the State alone.... "

To my Conservative readers, does the phrase "deprived of all useless and possibly harmful freedom" not sound very much like the "nanny state" you so often complain about? And yet Mussolini also wrote, "...Fascism [is] the complete opposite of…Marxian Socialism..." 

Are you beginning to get my freaking point? And then there's this:

"...For Fascism, the growth of empire, that is to say the expansion of the nation, is an essential manifestation of vitality, and its opposite a sign of decadence. Peoples which are rising, or rising again after a period of decadence, are always imperialist; and renunciation is a sign of decay and of death. Fascism is the doctrine best adapted to represent the tendencies and the aspirations of a people, like the people of Italy, who are rising again after many centuries of abasement and foreign servitude. But empire demands discipline, the coordination of all forces and a deeply felt sense of duty and sacrifice: this fact explains many aspects of the practical working of the regime, the character of many forces in the State, and the necessarily severe measures which must be taken against those who would oppose this spontaneous and inevitable movement of Italy in the twentieth century, and would oppose it by recalling the outworn ideology of the nineteenth century - repudiated wheresoever there has been the courage to undertake great experiments of social and political transformation; for never before has the nation stood more in need of authority, of direction and order. If every age has its own characteristic doctrine, there are a thousand signs which point to Fascism as the characteristic doctrine of our time. For if a doctrine must be a living thing, this is proved by the fact that Fascism has created a living faith; and that this faith is very powerful in the minds of men is demonstrated by those who have suffered and died for it."

Mussolini believed that he and Italy should rule the world. He sold Fascism to the Italian people using national pride and Italian patriotism as the manifest destiny of Italy but while Mussolini and Italy failed Fascism went on to quietly become the most powerful force in the world via lobbyists and bribes. And right now today Greensboro's fascist business leader Roy Carroll is buying his own Greensboro City Council.

That's Fascism, Capitalism works best when shared. Greensboro, America and the world needs more True Capitalists.