Author: Nicola Wright

What Has Capitalism Ever Done For Us?

When bemoaning the evils of capitalism, often from the soapbox of internet-connected smartphones or laptops, opponents of the free market are wont to wax lyrical about increasing income inequality. The rich are richer than ever before, because they hog obscene amounts of wealth that could be put to better use by plebs who are slaves to ‘the man,’ oppressed under the obligation that they toil endlessly for their wage. Like Reggie in Monty Python’s The Life of Brian, they demand to know: “What has capitalism ever done for us?” In the mouth of the anti-capitalist activist, ‘capitalism’ has become a dirty word. It conjures images of bloated, greedy, rich one-percenters reclining behind piles of cash as they exploit their low paid workers, hoarding profits borne of the ethic of consumerism, which manifests itself in millions of brainwashed souls mindlessly handing over their meagre earnings for the instant gratification that comes from buying the next unneeded gizmo. Such a dreary summation sells capitalism short. Capital itself is nothing more than privately owned money or assets used …