- NOTE: I first posted this article on my Facebook page.
The 9GAG guy who created and posted this meme is factually, historically, politically and scientifically clueless!
The truth is, capitalism is not a dictatorial system, thus it does not pick winners and losers. Capitalism is the only pro-FREEDOM, pro-LIBERTY social system and in a free market or PSEUDO-free market society (like America, Canada, Europe, etc.), it’s the people or consumers who have the power to choose winners and losers. The system guarantees what Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises called “consumer sovereignty”.
Since capitalism does not choose winners and losers and merely guarantees/protects people’s sovereign choice in the marketplace, it follows that there will always be markets for talentless people, brain-dead leftsts (in the universities), mediocre and corrupt politicians, bad and evil ideas, etc.
Unlike socialism that seeks to round reactionaries and political contrarians up and send them to reeducation and concentration camps, Capitalism merely guarantees freedom and man’s consumer and political sovereignty. It does not dictate how people should choose winners and losers in the market.
In explaining the ‘sovereignty of the consumers’, economist Ludwig von Mises wrote:
“In the political democracy only the votes cast for the majority candidate or the majority plan are effective in shaping the course of affairs. The votes polled by the minority do not directly influence policies. But on the market no vote is cast in vain. Every penny spent has the power to work upon the production processes.”
He further said:
“It is true, in the market the various consumers have not the same voting right. The rich cast more votes than the poorer citizens. But this inequality is itself the outcome of a previous voting process. To be rich, in a pure market economy, is the outcome of success in filling best the demands of the consumers. A wealthy man can preserve his wealth only by continuing to serve the consumers in the most efficient way.”
Now, it is important to understand that America is not a representative of capitalism or free market economy. Technically and by definition, America today is a Mixed Corporatist economy. It is a mixture of capitalism and socialism.
According to the 9GAG meme-maker, it’s Capitalism’s fault that inventor Nikola Tesla did not capitalize on his talent and intellectual ability. That it’s Capitalism’s fault that he died a pauper.
Well, I really admire Tesla and I believe he’s one of the greatest inventors who ever walked this planet. But Tesla was destroyed by his false sense of “humanitarianism” and altruism.
Here are some facts about Tesla that the meme-maker doesn’t know:
- 1. It’s a well-known fact that Tesla voluntarily WAIVED/RENOUNCED his royalties to help George Westinghouse, his business partner. His royalties would have been enough to make him one of the richest men in the world. In fact, many Tesla admirers and cultists even claimed that Tesla’s “waiving of royalties to help Westinghouse meant that Tesla would have to stoop to J.P. Morgan for main funding of Wardenclyffe.” He could have funded his own projects without relying on investors. Thus, Tesla’s decision not to collect his royalties was self-destructive. You can be the best inventor on earth, but that doesn’t guarantee you’d be good at everything. In other words, Tesla sucked at the financial aspects of the market.
- There’s one obvious yet undiscussed reason Tesla chose to migrate to America: It’s then booming Capitalist system. The whole of Europe 100 years ago was statist, socialistic or fascistic. America’s economic system guaranteed Tesla’s right to own his inventions and ideas. That same right was denied in his native homeland, Croatia/Yugoslavia/Serbia (or whatever!). Thus, he had no choice but to migrate to America in 1884. He officially became a U.S. citizen in 1891 when he was at the peak of his inventive powers.
- Here’s one BIG PROOF Tesla chose America because he wanted ownership of his achievements/inventions: He SUED Guglielmo Marconi for stealing his patents.
So, it’s Capitalism’s fault that “talentless” Paris Hilton made more money than Tesla?
I believe the 9GAG meme-maker should have been more honest and proposed a different system(e.g., socialism or fascism) that would FORCE people/consumers to pick winners and losers in the marketplace. Also, he/she should have been more honest and argued that Paris Hilton’s buying fans should all be FORCED (perhaps by law or political decree) to ignore her and to stop buying her products. It’s not possible at all to teach people not to be stupid. In fact, the 9Gag meme-maker is actually incredibly stupid.
Thus, the meme-maker should have been more honest and proposed: “THERE OUGHT TO BE A LAW against talentless people like Paris Hilton.”
However, Paris Hilton may be a “talentless” singer or actress, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t have other proprietary, money-making talents and abilities! She’s doing a great job marketing her own brand and products.
One big fallacy about Capitalism is that MONEY determines success. That’s not true. In a free society, where consumers have the freedom and free will to choose, a hard-working piggery or thrift-store owner can possibly make more money than a conscientious, intelligent mentor or professor.
- Now here’s my counter-meme!