The Quote by Dr. Per Blyund on What Causes Prosperity:
“What causes poverty? Nothing. it is the original state. The default and starting point. The real question is, what causes prosperity?” -Dr. Per Blyund on What Causes Prosperity
My Take on What Causes Prosperity:
Through reading books about the history of the 20th Century, it’s easy to see that the greatest mistake of that century was accepting ideologies that didn’t support capitalism, the ideology of prosperity. Socialism, fascism, and communism all flourished because citizens of those nations didn’t understand that capitalism causes prosperity and socialism, or any other collectivist ideology, causes a reversion to poverty.
And as Dr. Blyund states, poverty is the base state of mankind. The virtue of capitalism is that it is a rising tide that helps lift the poor out of poverty. Socialism does nothing of the sort; socialism leads only to poverty. That is, unless you’re a socialist leader like Che Guevara, who was gifted a palace in Cuba.
In my view, it is indisputable that capitalism is what causes prosperity. Adam Smith wrote The Wealth of Nations, and the Western nations that adopted the ideas in it, such as the United States and Great Britain, became unfathomably wealthy over the next century, while those countries that didn’t accept it fell farther and farther behind.
Actually, that is not just my view. That is a historical fact. Nations that embraced capitalism, as Niall Ferguson says in Civilization: The West and the Rest, were able to quickly outpace all other nations in terms of prosperity. Because they unleashed the free market, Western nations had economies that rapidly grew and created innovative product after innovative product. New medicines, new weapons, new forms of transportation, and new forms of communication, or, in other words, all the inventions that built the modern world, were created by the Western nations that embraced capitalism.
That is because capitalism is what causes prosperity. It creates an incentive structure that leads to prosperity and innovation. That is not an opinion. That is a fact.
If you are interested in seeing why capitalism gave countries that believed in it a huge advantage, then you should read both Capitalism and Freedom and The Road to Serfdom. After reading those books, you’ll know what you need to about socialism and understand that capitalism is what causes prosperity. Socialism Sucks is another great example, and a bit easier of a read.
Furthermore, that advantage of capitalism over any other economic system is what gave the post-American Revolution West such a huge advantage over the rest of the world, as Niall Ferguson describes in Civilization: The West and the Rest. That history of capitalism triumphing over anything and everything else should inform our future economic decisions; we no longer need to experiment and try to find what causes prosperity because now we know that capitalism does. It’s indisputable and is exactly what we need to remember as we face decisions about what economic policies to follow.
Unfortunately, the Democrats do not get that. For some reason, probably their intense and deep-seated hatred of individual initiative rather than collective, societal action, they have completely ignored all of the good things that capitalism has done for the world, namely its creation of prosperity in every nation that embraces it. At the same time, they ignore all the flaws of socialism and seem posed to fully embrace socialism rather than capitalism.
That is absurd. Communism and socialism are ideologies that lead to poverty and misery, not prosperity. Just look at the history of the 20th Century! While western nations and even some nations in the east fully embraced capitalism and became prosperous as a result, the Soviet Union, Venezuela, Cuba, and China embraced socialism. What happened? Just read The Case Against Socialism or The Gulag Archipelago to see; socialism destroyed Venezuela and the economy of every other nation that supported it.
Conclusion: Capitalism Causes Prosperity
Unfortunately, few Americans seem to understand that capitalism is what causes prosperity. Perhaps they have a vague idea that capitalism is better than communism because communism always fails, but it’s rare to find someone who understands that socialism and communism are basically the same thing. In fact, the only difference between the two is that communism is murder and socialism is suicide.
So, we are stuck in the weird state of being by far the most prosperous state on Earth, but with a rising generation of millennial socialists who were imparted with those beliefs by socialists on college campuses.
To correct that, we need to educate people on what causes prosperity and what causes a reversion to poverty. If only they would just read Atlas Shrugged, then they’d see that socialism leads to poverty! And we need to pressure more people to read books like it, otherwise we’ll perpetually be stuck with generation after generation of people who don’t understand economics.
Republicans need to unequivocally state that capitalism is what causes prosperity. That is a fact, not an opinion. Share this article so that more people know that!