The Fatal Flaw Of Free Market Capitalism

Imagine suffering a plane crash above the ocean with only you and one other passenger surviving both of you get washed up on a deserted island with nothing but sandbanks and palm trees once you wake up on the shore and look around you notice the other survivor’s footprints looks like he woke up before you as you explore the island you find him sitting on a huge pile of coconuts turns out while you were unconscious he went around and collected every single coconut on the island for himself coconuts that you would also need if you don’t want to starve of course you could go and try your luck catching some fish along the shore but according to statistics 9 out of 10 startup fishermen end up dying of hunger in the end the coconuts are your only realistic chance at survival so you ask him can you give me some coconuts please and he says sure i can give you some coconuts if you suck my dick [Laughter] you are faced with a conundrum do you suck the coconut man’s dick let’s keep this question in mind for later my political views and consequently my urban planning and transit views are all informed by one overarching value i want as many people as possible to live the best lives they can with the largest possible degree of freedom in practice this means that every adult person should be free to do whatever they want as long as they don’t harm others physically mentally or financially and just to clarify i am pro-choice i don’t think the fetus is a full-fledged person so the mother’s interest should take priority so as a freedom-loving person it should be self-explanatory that i support ideologies such as free market capitalism or even anarcho-capitalism right so what do these two ideologies entail in a free market capitalist system the economy operates with very little to no government intervention now keep in mind that we’re only talking about the markets here in every other aspect of life the government can be very much repressive for example even totalitarian dictatorships can be free market or at least lean towards it in contrast anarcho-capitalism is a system without a government or at least a centralized institution able to affect coercion on you everything is left up to the free market and the people’s self-organization and i’m here to make the case that within a short amount of time both systems would devolve into a horrifying authoritarian dictatorship but how come these two ideologies would bring about the exact things they are designed to alleviate namely oppression and coercion let’s take a look first at free market capitalism and my question to you is is your workplace democratic and by that i mean do you as an employee have a say in how your workplace is run well not really right maybe in like a very small business but even then you don’t have any say in the meaningful decisions like if there’s say five of you working at a small restaurant as waiters you can ask the owner to for example rearrange the tables a bit because right now the layout is super inconvenient to navigate with a bunch of plates in your hand but the outcome of that request is still completely determined by the goodwill of the owner they can say yeah sure how do you want to organize the tables or nope sorry the layout is good the way it is and for me this is like a little chiefdom if you will it’s a small community you get the chief running things and everyone can just go and petition the chief personally if they want to but see the outcome of the request is still determined completely by the chieftain even if all five of you go to them and say so here’s a petition all five of us have voted to rearrange the table layout the chieftain can still go yeah i disagree with that so too bad we end up with a system where the will of the people will be taken into account if and only if a the leader is a nice person b the leader is afraid that some of the subordinates might quit and so they would need to spend more time and money on additional recruitment or c the leader believes that the new table arrangement would lead to more efficient work and so the business would make more money so here whether the will of the people will be taken into account depends on a personal kindness b fear of losing money and c the promise of more money so as you can see this is not exactly the perfect recipe for freedom so what happens in a bigger business with more employees big business takes the concept of chiefdom and upgrades it to a totalitarian dictatorship as bob black wrote in his essay the abolition of work work makes a mockery of freedom the official line is that we all have rights and live in a democracy other unfortunates who aren’t free like we are are forced to live in police states these victims obey orders or else no matter how arbitrary the authorities keep them on the regular surveillance state bureaucrats control even the smaller details of everyday life the officials who push them around are answerable only to higher-ups public or private either way descent and disobedience are punished informers report regularly to the authorities all this is supposed to be a very bad thing and so it is although it is nothing but a description of the modern workplace a great example of this is when major corporations try to prevent workers unions from forming also known as union busting a practice that is illegal mind you but they still do it anyway for example have you heard about this company called tesla and its owner elon musk and to quote from a vox article titled elon musk broke u.s labor laws on twitter tesla tried many different tactics to stop workers from forming a labor union tesla workers distributing pro-union leaflets in the parking lot in their time off were harassed by three security guards a supervisor later warned them that they could be fired for distributing those leaflets summoning the organizers into his office elon musk illegally tried to dissuade the workers from forming a workers union and as leaked emails have shown the hr department tried to put the organizers into management so they won’t be able to organize a union on the factory floor and then once again illegally tesla banned employees from wearing pro union t-shirts and buttons and also illegally tesla fired one of the organizers co-workers who criticized tesla employees who spoke out against the union-backed bill and then repeat after me illegally elon musk tweeted out the following nothing stopping tesla team at our car plan from voting union could those who tomorrow if they wanted but why pay union dues and give up your stock options for nothing our safety record is two times better than when the plant was uew and everybody already gets health care okay in other words nothing stopping the peasantry in our kingdom from enacting democracy could do tomorrow if they wanted but why get your head chopped off for nothing law and order is two times better than when kingdom was under louis xiii and we already have the code louis alright so at this point what real choice does the employee have proponents of free market capitalism usually bring up the fact that the workers can just switch workplaces or you know just move to another city this is the freedom that workers have but is it though you know changing your workplace is not an easy thing to do i know because i’ve done it before it’s long time consuming financially difficult chances are you’ll be without a salary for at least a month not to mention how stressful it can be not to mention the older you get the more difficult it will become to get hired i know people personally who try to change their jobs in their mid 40s despite them being super qualified with ton of experience in a booming job market it was still super difficult also what if there’s nothing for you to do in your area what if you live in some small town in some flyover state with like one walmart and two other workplaces and you want to quit your current job because your employer wants to cut your salary to five dollars per hour and increase your work hours to 16 hours per day because under free market capitalism they are allowed to do that trust me there’s a lot of things corporations would do under a free market system like violating your privacy online or offline or selling off your sensitive information for money speaking of which nifty breach scanner feature open the menu inside the app enter an email address and the app will show you whether there have been any leaks associated with that email address and as an ended line of defense the app also allows you to block unwanted trackers from websites just flip the switch and you’re done atlas vpn runs both on desktop and on mobile and of course it’s compatible with all major operating systems right now atlas vpn is running a huge discount on their 3-year plan this means you can subscribe to their services for just one dollar and 39 cents per month this and the 30 day money back guarantee of course this offer won’t last forever so do check it out link in the description protect your privacy and don’t let region block stop you take advantage of this insane discount today thank you for checking out atlas vpn ads like this helps support the show you will find my affiliate link down in the description [Music] according to proponents of free market capitalism if you are out of options your main recourse is just to move to a different city now of course this can be a fine solution but we cannot ignore just how destructive it can also be moving to a new area can be hugely stressful i know because i’ve done it before not to mention if you move from some flyover state to say a coastal state you’ll be leaving behind friends family acquaintances i.e you will lose your social safety net and you will lose your community and this is made all the worse if you have say school-age children you have to take them with you that means leaving behind their school their friends hell even maybe their boyfriends or girlfriends the teachers they knew the neighborhood they grew up in maybe even the grandparents or other relatives who also lived there now i’m no child psychology expert but i don’t think for some reason that that’s particularly conducive for the child’s development the only group of people who would not be affected by the negative consequences of moving that much would be young adults between the ages of 18 and 25 who are hyper online don’t leave the house that often and have very few to know real life friends and so let us now talk about anarcho-capitalism and what its proponents want to bring about and so as we discussed before free market capitalism doesn’t want government influence in the market however the state can be very much present in other aspects of life for example they can still provide public services and infrastructure next to the private ones anarcho-capitalism however in its primal form is a stateless society there is no government everything depends on people’s self-organization and the free market all the functions that were performed by the government previously are now completely privatized meaning you could live on your private property and freely contract with anyone else without any coercion as long as they basically just don’t mess with other people also called the non-aggression principle this means that technically you would be able to live a life of absolute freedom well until the amazon gestapo shows up and tells you that you are now under the rule of holy jeff bezos the first and anyone opposing him will be decapitated in an amazon warehouse and their body parts will be sent to their family members as a warning in boxes with same-day amazon prime delivery but hey if you don’t agree with this you’ll be perfectly free to start reciting the non-aggression principle until the firing squad officer tells you to shut the [ __ ] up and keep digging so i believe by now all of us can start seeing the problem the fatal flaw at the core of free market capitalism and consequently anarcho-capitalism both ideologies seek to increase the power and influence of institutions that are autocratic in nature traditional corporations are set up like dictatorships the owner has absolute control and the subordinates can only hold the owner accountable through a government which in the first world is a parallel democratic more powerful power structure and so it can hold the corporate autocratic power structures accountable if you get rid of it then the only game remaining in town will be the autocratic power structures meaning they’ll be the ones with ultimate control in free market capitalism they’ll control the economy and who knows maybe more things by proxy and in anarcho-capitalism they’ll control everything and guess what coercion happens to be the central part of any autocracy so if your goal is the lack of coercion then free market capitalism or anarcho-capitalism should be the last things you would want and i’m confident in making this statement because coercion already exists in the current system and it’s not coming from the government if your only choice is to work some shitty job or be homeless as is the case for millions of people then i would say you are not really free i mean hey you do have the option to quit and be homeless but is that really the type of freedom you would want and so let us now circle back to the original question do you suck the coconut man’s dick hey you’re free not to with dying of hunger as the consequence and that’s i believe to be coercion if you want a system with the maximum possible amount of freedom and the minimum possible amount of coercion then if i were you i would not base it on the current form of capitalism a system that is autocratic in nature but i do think there is a solution actually namely workplace democracy give workers more control over their own workplace curtail the absolute power of business owners let workers democratically decide how profits will be allocated so i would personally just give a tax break to any worker co-op firms and see if they work out if they do hell yeah let’s have more if not well i guess we’ll just have to figure out something else but there are pretty successful examples already so i’ve known that they would work out actually now upon hearing this you might ask okay adam but if co-ops are so good and you know better than traditional firms how can we still have traditional firms how come we haven’t transitioned into worker co-ops well consider the following just because a system is better it doesn’t mean that we will automatically transition to it the prerequisites of capitalism existed centuries before capitalism itself and i do believe that the next step after late stage capitalism the system we have currently would be co-op-based capitalism in any case we need something new and we need it now and free market capitalism or anarcho-capitalism are just not going to cut it they’re just more the same and i believe we’ve all had enough of that already you know coconuts and all thank you