Saturday, November 15, 2008

Breaking: President George W. Bush Confused about Definition of "Capitalism"

Speaking at the Manhattan Institute yesterday, George W. Bush said that he believes in capitalism, arguing that:

"the surest path to...growth is free markets and free people."

It seems to me that President Bush is confused. Free markets and free people are by definition independent of government. defines capitalism as:

"an economic system in which investment in and ownership of the means of production, distribution, and exchange of wealth is made and maintained chiefly by private individuals or corporations, esp. as contrasted to cooperatively or state-owned means of wealth."

President Bush has:

-used a government agency, the Federal Reserve Bank, to pump endless amounts of money into the economy for the past eight years causing massive distortion, over-building, over-purchasing and economic dislocation
-aimed to solve these government-induced problems, induced during his administration, by pumping even more money into the system
-caused the federal government to take a $150 billion stake in an insurance company, AIG, to help his cronies on Wall Street
-caused Congress to authorize $750 billion in bailout money to interfere with market forces
-overseen massive growth in the federal government budget
-failed to cut any government agencies or budgets of note

It seems to me that President Bush is confused. Capitalism means private ownership. The bailout his chief economic advisor, Henry Paulson, has engineered involves new breakthroughs toward public ownership.

The current instability in the economy is indeed due to big government, specifically the past 28 years of Federal Reserve policy, mostly during Republican administrations.

The Bush presidency has convinced me that northeasterners and anyone associated with a university in the northeast ought not to be allowed near the levers of power. President Bush, a graduate of the Harvard Business School, does not seem to know what capitalism means. He does not know what markets are. He is an economic illiterate. He is the symptom of an underlying problem. Progressivism, the dominant ideology in the northeast, is opposed to freedom and opposed to free markets.

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