Let’s close the sale

Now’s the time to sell skeptics on the virtues of capitalism

American capitalists capped off a roaring 2017 with historic tax cuts, which were a long-time coming and which we heartily endorse.

 

Several major corporations celebrated by giving employees year-end bonuses – proving it’s smart for government to take less of our money.

And as we were reminded by a local business owner, most employee bonuses and benefits don’t make headlines. So it’s fair to assume there are hundreds of thousands of perks that are going unnoticed out there.

Meanwhile, consumers, already in a bullish mood, concluded the Christmas season with all-time record spending of over $800 billion this holiday season.

Reuters reported the holiday spending was “boosted by growing consumer confidence, rising employment and early discounts.”

This is what happens when government takes its yoke off the free enterprise system.

Still, a word of caution heading into what looks to be another banner year economically in 2018: The job of restoring the free market, and putting a buff shine on capitalism is going to take more than even a record-setting Christmas season.

It’s going to take much more than that to reverse the tide of young anti-capitalists, such as the millions of Bernie Sanders acolytes who very nearly made the avowed socialist the Democratic presidential nominee in 2016. Besides the Sanders vote, polls show these young restive anti-capitalists – emboldened, too, by the short-lived “Occupy Wall Street” movement – are increasingly bitter toward capitalism’s failings.

Not having grown up in the shadow of the Cold War and communist expansionism, not familiar with communism’s lethal evils and excesses, and oddly oblivious to socialism starving the people of Venezuela right before our eyes, young people today seem only to see what’s wrong with capitalism.

Yet, while horribly misguided, they’re not always wrong. As with any institution of man, the free market can be callously indifferent.

Still, their mistake is in comparing the free market’s imperfections to utopian theories of socialism or even communism – notions that have been not only discredited by history but also strewn with the blood of their victims.

No one will set these yearning youths straight except the captains of industry and other fans of free markets.

But they’d better set about doing it.

Capitalists had better realize that even a welcome, historic, economy-jolting set of tax cuts, a bustling Christmas season and isolated bonuses for some of the working stiffs won’t be enough to restore capitalism’s image or ensure its future.

American capitalists, who are the best in the world at selling widgets, must ultimately sell folks on capitalism.

 

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