Capitalism is Evil
I am not an economist, nor the son of an economist, but that doesn’t mean I can’t make informed observations about the theological implications that are within the realm of economic theory and practice. So the rest of this post will be that, a reflection on why I see Capitalism as evil.
Coincidentally, as I had already planned on writing about this last night, in my Bible reading today, I came across this passage:
Ah, you who make iniquitous decrees, who write oppressive statutes, 2. to turn aside the needy from justice and to rob the poor of my people of their right, that widows may be your spoil, and that you may make the orphans your prey. Isaiah 10:1-2
I work for a large corporation in the United States (second behind Walmart), and so I will speak from my experience in this setting; my existential reality as a laborer under the Free Market Capitalist regime we currently inhabit.
Let me start by asking a question? Why is it that ‘conservative’ North American Evangelical Christians so frequently equate being Christian (theopolitically) with being a Capitalist? How has Capitalism not oppressed the poor (or even the middle class)? And maybe what I am referring to is where we are at now in the evolution and natural progression of Capitalism; what some refer to as crony Capitalism.
My experience of Capitalism, as a worker, is that people are dehumanized in the corporate system; people are as much of a cog in the corporate machine as they are in the atheistic communist system. People in the Capitalist corporate system are expendable, expendable to the people for whom the worker is making the money. I know that someone will opine at this point; ‘yeah, but without the rich there would be no jobs’, as if this justifies the way the rich get rich.
I am not trying to offer an alternative; I am not trying to reason from pragmatism; I am not doing anything here, but making existential observation, and trying to think from the principle that God never honors any system or practice that takes advantage of the poor (which is relative; poverty that is).
So I just don’t understand how Christians can equate Christianity and its teaching with American Capitalism. Sure, you can appeal to a consequentialist ethic, and use pragmatism to assuage your conscience; but how this jives with Christian reality on justice and seeking the welfare of the poor (without appealing to some sort of Benthamian ethical calculus) totally confounds me.
See, just a stream of consciousness reflection.