Capitalism: A deal with the devil

When it is morality versus profit, profit rarely loses; the challenge is to distribute it evenly to benefit everyone.

Frayan Doctor March 08, 2012
It has been the greatest success story in the history of mankind. It has fuelled unprecedented economic, social and cultural growth, alleviated millions of people around the world from poverty and economic hardship, and ushered in a new era of technological innovation.

However, while none of the political bigwigs and the so-called pariahs of the system care to admit, capitalism has created just about every problem in our world and the majority of its seven billion plus people face daily. It can be argued that terrorism global financial crises, famines, droughts and environmental changes are all the byproducts of the relentless need and greed for money, consumerism and a more exuberant lifestyle that our planet’s limited resources simply cannot sustain.

Such a system cannot continue in its present mould, and we are seeing people react to what can only be seen as robbery in broad daylight. Men like Richard Dick Severin Fuld – the longest serving CEO on Wall Street and the man responsible for the collapse of his company Lehman Brothers – made millions of dollars through complicated and illegal banking practices, and still managed to get a hefty, tax-free severance package. He did not face any criminal charges, even though the bankruptcy of the institution triggered a near global collapse of the money markets. One has to wonder, is it because the bosses of these massive companies are aligned with politicians in some way? Certainly the campaign money to run for the Senate, the House of Representatives or the presidency in the United States comes from these companies in return for favourable tax policies.

Until and unless we get rid of the corruption, bigotry and nepotism which have crept into every fibre of our social fabric and create a fair and just system, we will continue having an imbalanced society, with opportunities limited for all and sundry to make a decent living.

When morality comes up against profit, rarely does profit ever lose. The challenge is to distribute this profit evenly for the benefit of all.

Frayan Doctor A sub-editor at The Express Tribune who has a keen interest in national and international politics, social issues and sports.
The views expressed by the writer and the reader comments do not necassarily reflect the views and policies of the Express Tribune.


bigsaf | 12 years ago | Reply You would have been better off just making a simple case for Pakistan to have a proper accountable tax system, and to call for Pakistani politicians and elites to pay their fair share on tax, which they don't, on the massive land they own and what they produce, as well as on real estate and stocks. Does anyone even pay normal income tax there? As well as military men not using the national treasury as their own personal bank accounts, blowing a hole through it, leaving peanuts for education or health services, etc. Even your lawyers and most in the judiciary don't pay taxes, going as so far as to issue cases against the tax collectors! When one politician offered to pay full tax, the tax collectors were hesitant and considered it a dangerous ploy! Sadly it is the poor, paying through indirect taxes subsidizing the rich. You would think this injustice would be enough for the masses to finally revolt. But unfortunately hypocritical religious parties or the like, and Pakistani society on the whole, will be more outraged in chasing some minority, protecting their nationalist religious pride (and their own illegal earnings), than actual white collar crime, let alone terrorists.
Asif | 12 years ago | Reply Capitalism is considered to be the Combination of Free-Market Economics with Fractional Banking. Whatever you said here was related to Banking, not free Market. Fact is Free-Market has proven itself in its 5000 years of existence. Banking - not so.
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