As discussed earlier, ideal capitalism, while allowing personal freedom, compounds the suffering of the poor and destitute. Ideal socialism, on the other hand, saves the economic welfare of the poor at the expense of everyone’s privacy and diversity. Any worthwhile economic governmental system, if one exists, must solve both problems.
In addition, no government idea that requires everyone, or even most people, to follow a particular mindset or carry out a series of specified actions will work — people are just too different for such a system to function.
So what could work? Here are some ideas:
- Government as Business. In this system, the central government itself employs people, like any other business, in for-profit ventures. This would provide a much higher rate of employment and even decrease the need for taxes, due to the earnings of the business. However, this could be considered unfair, because the government also has the power of economic regulation.
- . The government is obligated to provide amenities, like food, clothing, and shelter, or simply flat sums of money, to everyone who does not or cannot make the sufficient amount by themselves. Theoretically unassailable, this scenario is marred by its huge expense.
- The patron-client system. Known foremost as the mechanism of Ancient Rome’s social stability, this involves the rich, or patrons, being directly responsible for the welfare of their poorer clients and supporting them in their endeavors. For such an idea to re-emerge, it would have to be modernized and strictly enforced.
All of these ideas, to some extent, do exist in modern-day America. The public sector employs over two million citizens. Examples of welfare such as food stamps and Medicare do form a safety net, if not an airtight one. And though the benefits are not enforced in any way, the doctrines of supply-side economics pays lip service to the idea of the rich and corporations supporting the poor.
Most of these programs are steps in the right direction. But over 43 million Americans live in poverty — what is being done is not nearly enough. #