Catholic FAQ


Latest Threads
newest posts



Go Back   Catholic Answers Forums > Forums > Apologetics > Social Justice
 

Welcome to Catholic Answers Forums, the largest Catholic Community on the Web.

Here you can join over 400,000 members from around the world discussing all things Catholic. Membership is open to all, Catholic and non-Catholic alike, who seek the Truth with Charity.

To gain full access, you must register for a FREE account. Registered members are able to:
  • Submit questions about the faith to experts from Catholic Answers
  • Participate in all forum discussions
  • Communicate privately with Catholics from around the world
  • Plus join a prayer group, read with the Book Club, and much more.
Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free. So join our community today!

Have a question about registration or your account log-in? Just contact our Support Hotline.

Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Search Thread Display
  #46  
Old Jan 23, '12, 7:38 am
manualman manualman is offline
Veteran Member
 
Join Date: December 17, 2004
Posts: 10,981
Religion: Catholic - no buts.
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu View Post
...

1. Where, and who, here has called for or supported no government regulations?

Listen, learn and love concerning the teaching re free enterprise in Centesimus Annus, Bl John Paul II, 1991:
...

2. ‘If by "capitalism" is meant an economic system which recognizes the fundamental and positive role of business, the market, private property and the resulting responsibility for the means of production, as well as free human creativity in the economic sector, then the answer is certainly in the affirmative, even though it would perhaps be more appropriate to speak of a "business economy", "market economy" or simply "free economy".’
1. Surely you cannot be unaware of the major push in our society today by those who claim that government intervention is always negative and harmful and that "free markets" (usually defined by these folks as repealing all regulation and oversight) is always an improvement over the status quo?

2. A little too convenient that you cut off JPII right before he got out this part:
"But if by "capitalism" is meant a system in which freedom in the economic sector is not circumscribed within a strong juridical framework which places it at the service of human freedom in its totality, and which sees it as a particular aspect of that freedom, the core of which is ethical and religious, then the reply is certainly negative."

The problem with ideologues like Rand (or Marx for that matter) is that they focus their entire attention and philosophy on secondary matters. Thus, they propose solutions that make problems worse instead of better. Marx, for all of communism's horrific results, made some genuine, accurate criticisms of the world he lived in, where the rich and the powerful exploited the poor and the weak shamelessly. The fact that his cure was worse than the disease in now way negates the fact that he DID notice serious injustices in the world and comment on them.

Rand makes the equal and opposite mistake. She sees the utter failure of communism (which are real and she comments accurately on many of the problems). But, like Marx, she goes on to propose a cure worse than the disease.

Again, Chesterton nails it: "Reformers are usually right about what is wrong, but are almost always wrong about what is right." (paraphrased from memory) Both Marx and Rand tried to be reformers. But good intentions aren't enough to secure good outcomes. Both of them fail because they fail to recognize what man really is, where we come from and to what we are destined.
  #47  
Old Jan 23, '12, 11:42 am
fakename fakename is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: January 11, 2009
Posts: 2,411
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

To those who say that capitalism is based on greed:

If you define greed as an irrational love of money, then I agree, but then I would also say that the same applied to mercantilism since the whole doctrine of mercantilism revolved around getting money pure and simple.

But if you define greed as the need to accumulate money then I disagree because if that was true, then money would have no value since everyone would rather hoard money then exchange it for goods.

Capitalism, as it exists today, is not predicated on money as much as it is predicated on the things which money can buy, most of which is probably not sinful.
  #48  
Old Jan 23, '12, 12:24 pm
fakename fakename is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: January 11, 2009
Posts: 2,411
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

I also thought this would be a contribution to this thread.

I'm going to give some econ. stats on Hong Kong primarily because, if there is a place that exemplifies capitalism it is Hong Kong.

From Wikipedia:

It ranks 1 in terms of economic freedom

It's gini index is 53, it has about a 100 billion dollar trade deficit (exports-imports), the public debt is only .0001% of its GDP, GDP per capita (corrected for inflation/deflation/cost of living) is $49,342 which exceeds the US by $200 and Sweden's by about $9000 dollars. It's unemployment rate as of 2011 was 3.4% and the proportion of poor people in the population is (probably since there are no official stats) 14%. From the 60s to the 90s its GDP grew 180 times, I'm not sure any other country has done better or equal to that.

So in some areas it is about equal to the US while in others it is even better than Sweden. So I think that this provides a relatively favorable picture to "unrestrained" capitalism.
  #49  
Old Jan 23, '12, 4:04 pm
Abu Abu is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: March 8, 2008
Posts: 3,963
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
manualman #46
A little too convenient that you cut off JPII right before he got out this part:
"But if by "capitalism" is meant a system in which freedom in the economic sector is not circumscribed within a strong juridical framework which places it at the service of human freedom in its totality, and which sees it as a particular aspect of that freedom, the core of which is ethical and religious, then the reply is certainly negative."
Your error in #35 was in stating: ‘You appear to be erroneously assuming that any government regulation, differential taxation or legal restrictions on commerce is an abolition of "free enterprise." ’

That is false as shown by the fact that I have not claimed that, and Ayn Rand has been shown to be in error by me in post #4, repeated for you in post #38.

Since free enterprise has been emphatically affirmed by Bl JPII and post #4 states clearly that “the State has the right and duty to make wise laws, and that’s why we have laws to seek and punish those who steal, cheat, swindle, and against monopolies as people can, and some do, undermine the common good, and the primary role of government is to support families in solidarity, and the role of the Church in subsidiarity and, yes, the common good,” you are tilting at windmills.

The essence of free enterprise is on the basis of the principles developed by the Catholic Late Scholastics, within a wise rule of law which they required for the common good, and so affirmed by Bl JPII. This was reaffirmed in post #42.

Dr Chafuen states: “The objective of policy, according to the Medieval Doctors, is to favour the common good. This is in agreement with the principle that then general welfare is more important than individual interest.” [Christians For Freedom, Ignatius, 1986, p 159-160].
  #50  
Old Jan 23, '12, 4:35 pm
Abu Abu is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: March 8, 2008
Posts: 3,963
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

What has regularly hampered free enterprise is the fact that governments and their central banks practice finagling interventions which create booms and busts, overdo welfare and produce the enormous deficits seen on both sides of the Atlantic.

Unlike the sharp depression of 1920-21 which was sensibly handled without major government intervention, the Great Depression was caused by pumping money into the economy.

Even Alan Greenspan has highlighted the “excess credit which the Fed pumped into the economy," resulting, finally, in an American economic collapse in the Great Depression beginning in 1929 and extending, mostly, until 1941. This judgment which Greenspan makes about the "excess credit" that directly brought about the Great Depression was made in a 1966 article in Ayn Rand's Objectivist magazine and subsequently republished in Rand's Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal.[2]
[2] Alan Greenspan, "Gold and Economic Freedom" in Ayn Rand's Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal (New York: Penguin, 1987), pp. 20ff.

As Federal Reserve chairman between 1987 and 2006, Greenspan acted even more irresponsibly than the Fed officials he was criticizing. Rather than, "sopping up the excess reserves," Greenspan added even more, transforming a stock market bubble into a housing and consumer spending bubble of historic and unprecedented proportions.[3]
[3] Peter Schiff, Crash Proof: How to Profit from the Coming Economic Collapse (Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc., 2007), pp. xiii-xiv.
[From Peter Chojnowski, Ph.D].

http://www.thepublicdiscourse.com/author/sgregg/
Fatal Attraction: Democracy and the Welfare State by Samuel Gregg
June 18, 2010

When low economic growth and declining demography are combined with European welfare states—generous state-provided health and unemployment insurance; early retirement and liberal state pensions; large public sector employment; legislation that emphasizes job security over labor market flexibility—something eventually has to give.
  #51  
Old Jan 23, '12, 5:39 pm
Captain America Captain America is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: February 25, 2009
Posts: 1,221
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

The great problem for capitalism is that no capitalists are in favor of free markets.
  #52  
Old Jan 23, '12, 8:44 pm
TheTrueCentrist TheTrueCentrist is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: August 13, 2010
Posts: 2,561
Religion: Yours
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Monte RCMS View Post
Sorry, but I'm reading this discussion and that sentence doesn't make any sense to me.

First of all, in a truly capitalist system, no one has police power ... it is not a police state.

So, when one person offers a superior product or service, the other capitalists have to match or exceed the other person's service or product in quality or price or some other advantage favored by the market place.

So, the thing that makes capitalism successful is the better idea ... if you want to, you can say that one greedy person is kept in check by all of the other millions of greedy people, each of whom is looking out for his or her own best interest.

[Not sure I would use the word "greedy", though. Unless "enlightened self interest" is considered "greed".]

If I decide to buy a car, I have many choices. If I look up the Blue Book value and the Grey Book [Yonkers Auto Auction] value and Consumers Report and several other sources, to arrive at the price I want to pay ... and use that to negotiate with the car dealer, then am I being "greedy"?
I'm not sure why you brought up police. However, if a company was able to wield enough political power, it could conceivably make a competitor's products illegal. Some people would argue that is what happened in the case of hemp; DuPont allegedly fought to make industrial hemp illegal because it was competing with their new invention: nylon.

You're positing the best case scenario for capitalism. Consumers are not always perfectly informed. Also, if you look at capitalism and ask: "who are the winners?" your conclusion can only be "companies that achieve a monopoly." A company with a monopoly has essentially won the game of capitalism. They can then engage in any number of anti-competitive practices. In a sufficiently free market, a monopoly could render itself almost entirely bulletproof through these practices and the purchase of political power. If you recall as Chesterton so neatly put it, "To be smart enough to get all that money you must be dull enough to want it."

Again, I agree that not all people are greedy, but capitalism accommodates and encourages the greedy people. Eventually a person who is sufficiently skilled and greedy will "win" and achieve a monopoly.
  #53  
Old Jan 23, '12, 11:49 pm
Abu Abu is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: March 8, 2008
Posts: 3,963
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
TheTrueCentrist #52
capitalism accommodates and encourages the greedy people
The persistent fallacy here lies in not realising that Original Sin and thus life is open to greed and that the inculcation of virtue, reason and faith in the individual is what suppresses greed as Pope Benedict XVI affirmed: “Society does not have to protect itself from the market, as if the development of the latter were ipso facto to entail the death of authentically human relations…Therefore it is not the instrument that must be called to account, but individuals, their moral conscience and their personal and social responsibility.” (Caritas et Veritate, Benedict XVI, 2009, #36).
Quote:
In a sufficiently free market, a monopoly could render itself almost entirely bulletproof
This is persistently devious as you have been consistently shown that the free market affirmed by Bl JPII consists of “the fundamental and positive role of business, the market, private property and the resulting responsibility for the means of production, as well as free human creativity in the economic sector.”

“A sufficiently free market” is a fallacious construction to suit a pre-conceived assumption to produce a monopoly, whereas post #4 states clearly that “the State has the right and duty to make wise laws, and that’s why we have laws to seek and punish those who steal, cheat, swindle, and against monopolies as people can, and some do, undermine the common good, and the primary role of government is to support families in solidarity, and the role of the Church in subsidiarity and, yes, the common good.”

Of course a finagling administration distorts free enterprise, and creates the problems which it cannot solve.
  #54  
Old Jan 24, '12, 10:18 am
TheTrueCentrist TheTrueCentrist is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: August 13, 2010
Posts: 2,561
Religion: Yours
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu View Post
The persistent fallacy here lies in not realising that Original Sin and thus life is open to greed and that the inculcation of virtue, reason and faith in the individual is what suppresses greed as Pope Benedict XVI affirmed: “Society does not have to protect itself from the market, as if the development of the latter were ipso facto to entail the death of authentically human relations…Therefore it is not the instrument that must be called to account, but individuals, their moral conscience and their personal and social responsibility.” (Caritas et Veritate, Benedict XVI, 2009, #36).
I'm not saying that capitalism causes greed, only that it is greed which makes capitalism successful where other systems fail.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu View Post
This is persistently devious as you have been consistently shown that the free market affirmed by Bl JPII consists of “the fundamental and positive role of business, the market, private property and the resulting responsibility for the means of production, as well as free human creativity in the economic sector.”
That is silly and I would think it obvious as to why: you have set yourself up for a no true Scotsman response to any potential downside of capitalism. If businesses do something bad then you say "that is not the capitalism to which I was referring."
Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu View Post
“A sufficiently free market” is a fallacious construction to suit a pre-conceived assumption to produce a monopoly, whereas post #4 states clearly that “the State has the right and duty to make wise laws, and that’s why we have laws to seek and punish those who steal, cheat, swindle, and against monopolies as people can, and some do, undermine the common good, and the primary role of government is to support families in solidarity, and the role of the Church in subsidiarity and, yes, the common good.”

Of course a finagling administration distorts free enterprise, and creates the problems which it cannot solve.
Yes, but you must see that each one of those laws makes the market less free, converting a free market capitalist economy into a mixed one. The OP was that all capitalism was beneficial, and I think your qualifications show that is not the case.
  #55  
Old Jan 24, '12, 3:12 pm
Abu Abu is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: March 8, 2008
Posts: 3,963
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
TheTrueCentrist
each one of those laws makes the market less free
Free markets arose from the principles developed by the Catholic Late Scholastics essentially “to favour the common good…and policies to attain the common good should never run against the natural order and natural human rights….” [Dr Alejandro Chafuen, Christians For freedom, Ignatius, 1986, p 159-160].

“Freedom” does not mean licence, and never has the free market meant that laws such as referred to in post #53 should not be enacted, in the writings of the Late Scholastics and the Popes. They exist in most countries. Among groups of economists and governments views vary on the extent of government intervention – hence the booms and busts through government finagling.
Quote:
If businesses do something bad then you say "that is not the capitalism to which I was referring.”
Face reality and get out of the rut of confusing the principles of free enterprise with the participants –
"the market…is not the instrument that must be called to account, but individuals, their moral conscience and their personal and social responsibility.” (Caritas et Veritate, Benedict XVI, 2009, #36).

No one has ever expected perfection in this life, but there is nothing to compare with Catholic developed free enterprise versus any other economic system.
  #56  
Old Jan 24, '12, 6:41 pm
essie7777 essie7777 is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: January 3, 2012
Posts: 268
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu View Post
sniped for space
Abu, in numerous posts and threads you comment using the same few sentences to justify free enterprise. You seem to vary as to what this actually means, in one thread it's no regulation, in this you question when have you said that.

So i have just one simple question .... in brief terms, without quoting other resources (as at this point i'm not debating your justification for what you think) can you lay out EXACTLY what you mean by free enterprise. What this means for business, government regulations, workers right, just wages etc.

Maybe then the thread readers can actually comment rather than being led on a whirlwind of the wood use. Define what you actually mean for us, then there's no way we can be confused by your differing comments in different threads.
  #57  
Old Jan 24, '12, 7:25 pm
Abu Abu is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: March 8, 2008
Posts: 3,963
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
essie7777 #56
in numerous posts and threads you comment using the same few sentences to justify free enterprise. You seem to vary as to what this actually means, in one thread it's no regulation
Until you can reference where “no regulation” has been supported, and with such confused assumption that the Late Catholic Scholastics and the Popes are portrayed by me as countenancing “no regulation”, no further explanation would help.

Are not "the same few sentences" used from the Popes because they are the keys and cannot be refuted, as they are the warp and woof of the developed teaching on free enterprise?

Perhaps you would care to start with one point over which you are confused, reference it, and state how and why.
  #58  
Old Jan 24, '12, 9:45 pm
essie7777 essie7777 is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: January 3, 2012
Posts: 268
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Abu View Post
Snipped for irrelevance ... you are ignoring the question
I simply asked you to explain your definition of free enterprise.

I am not going to be waylaid from this very simple request by your attempt to deflect.

Are you not actually able to define free enterprise and what it means in real terms for us readers???????
  #59  
Old Jan 28, '12, 3:19 pm
John21652 John21652 is offline
Banned
 
Join Date: December 1, 2009
Posts: 7,979
Religion: Catholic
Send a message via MSN to John21652
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by essie7777 View Post
I simply asked you to explain your definition of free enterprise.

I am not going to be waylaid from this very simple request by your attempt to deflect.

Are you not actually able to define free enterprise and what it means in real terms for us readers???????
Why don't you?

And please, stop using that underlined red typing. It's very aggressive, in your face writing.
  #60  
Old Jan 28, '12, 4:17 pm
essie7777 essie7777 is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: January 3, 2012
Posts: 268
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Capitalism - a device for economic progress for everyone everywhere, every time it is tried.

Quote:
Originally Posted by John21652 View Post
Why don't you?

And please, stop using that underlined red typing. It's very aggressive, in your face writing.
I don't support or promote free enterprise constantly in threads so why would i need to define it when i am asking as Abu's definition seems to vary depending on what he's trying to say! I think its more than reasonable to ask Abu what he ACTUALLY means then by free enterprise so there's no confusion or misinterpretation of their POV.

If questions are ignored constantly, then repeating them in bold and underlined is hardly aggressive, that's your interpretation, its emphasis!
Closed Thread

Go Back   Catholic Answers Forums > Forums > Apologetics > Social Justice

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search Thread
Search Thread:

Advanced Search
Display

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



Prayer Intentions

Most Active Groups
8036Meet and talk,talk talk
Last by: georget
4826CAF Prayer Warriors Support Group
Last by: UpUpAndAway
4292Devotion to the Sorrowful Mother
Last by: FootStool
4027OCD/Scrupulosity Group
Last by: fencersmother
3812SOLITUDE
Last by: beth40n2
3372Let's empty Purgatory
Last by: RJB
3184Catholic Vegetarians & Vegans
Last by: libralion
3148Poems and Reflections
Last by: tonyg
2962For seniors and shut- ins
Last by: SERVENT FOR GOD
2698Petitions Before the Blessed Sacrament
Last by: Amiciel



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 3:20 am.

Home RSS Feeds - Home - Archive - Top

Copyright © 2004-2013, Catholic Answers.