"CAPITALISM" ...a simple parable!

in LeoFinance8 months ago

"The Parable"

An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked:

-Hey! how long it took to catch them?

The Mexican replied:

-Only a little while!

The American then asked:

-Why didn’t you stay out longer and catch more fish?

The Mexican said:

-I had enough to support my family’s immediate needs.

The American then asked:

-But what do you do with the rest of your time?

The Mexican fisherman said:

-I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siestas with my wife Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos. ¡I have a full and busy life!

The American scoffed:

-I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat, you could buy several boats and eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City, where you will run your expanding enterprise.

The Mexican fisherman asked:

-But, how long will this all take?

To which the American replied:

-Well, around 15 or 20 years!

And then, the Mexican asked:

-But what then?

The American laughed and said:

-That’s the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions!

The Mexican fisherman asked again:

-¿Millions? ...then what?

The American said:

-Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siestas with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.

"In Audiovisual Format"

"A few random concepts"


First of all, for any "capitalist" system to function today in the way that people think about capitalism, it must use money as a medium of exchange. A moneyless society which relies on self-sufficiency or barter rather than money for trade and exchange cannot be "capitalist" in the sense that people think about capitalism today.

This may seem like an obvious point, but it isn't. Imagine a capitalist society without money. It is absolutely possible to have such a thing and make it work, because capitalism is nothing more than a lack of government control and many people live or have lived comfortably and happily without either money or government.

Need for business as a social pillar:

In a modern "capitalist" society, business is not merely something that people do, like brushing their teeth or tying their shoes. It is a fundamental pillar of life and society without which both would rapidly collapse. In a "capitalist" society, life does not merely make use of business and commerce to improve quality of life. In a "capitalist" society today, life is business and commerce. These things are more important than life itself, because life is contingent on the existence of money, business, and commerce just as much as it is on water. Just as life cannot exist on a planet without water, so too can life in a capitalist society not exist without business.

The use of money to generate more money:

As soon as money becomes used as a medium of exchange, the mechanisms of production fall apart. Because there will always be people who try to make a living by manipulating the mechanisms of that exchange rather than by actually making themselves useful. The whole purpose of money is to encourage people to produce goods and services that are useful so that they can make money by selling those goods and services to other people.

However, the problem becomes that making and selling useful goods and services requires work and it's much easier and more effective to just make (or take) a bunch of money and use that to buy whatever you want. One of the hallmarks of what people talk about when they talk about "capitalism" is this practice of using a lot of money to generate a whole lot more money for yourself. All without producing anything that's actually of value to anyone else.

Spirit of competition rather than cooperation:

One of the most important values of any modern "capitalist" society is that of competition. In order to have a "capitalist" society, it's important that people fight each other and refuse to work together. In "capitalism" cooperation is for deviants, people who would subvert the mechanism of the system. Only by fighting against an enemy and prevailing against them can "capitalism" work for anyone.

Elimination of "practical" industries:

Because "capitalism" is about making as much money as possible, useful industry in a "capitalist" society will inevitably be marginalized or eliminated altogether as irrelevant to the continued functionality of the "capitalist" system. In a modern "capitalist" system, things like farming, technology, literature and education have no value, because they cannot make much money. Farming is a low-margin business for most farmers and is only still tolerated in modern capitalism because people have not yet figured out how to replace the need for food and eating with more capitalism.

Technology is not valued in capitalism unless it can make money, which it usually can't. If an appealing new technology is developed, it may make some money at first as consumers buy it, but the technology quickly loses its appeal and is no longer interesting to "capitalism" in the long run. Literature is not valued in capitalism because it does not make money. Likewise, education is not valued in capitalism because all those ideas just fill up a person's head and get in the way of making money.

Consumptive society:

Because "capitalism" is all about the exchange of money, it is critically important that the people living in a "capitalist" society think about money constantly. That means not only ways to make or receive money, but also ways to spend that money.

It is thus vital that a "capitalist" society not only provide people with an endless array of appealing things to spend their money on, but also that it institute the value that spending money is one of the most important things a person can do, because buying and spending money injects money into the circular flow of money within a capitalist system.

Which is of course the most important thing in such a society. It is often said that Americans don't save enough money since most of them tend to spend all of their disposable income on things which are not necessary. But in truth, within the construct of this type of "capitalist" system, this is exactly what Americans are supposed to do. If they did not spend all of their disposable income, the flow of money would cease, and society would collapse. Saving money would bring about nothing less than the destruction of "capitalist" society.

Having thus defined "capitalism" in terms of a few of its distinguishing traits. This funny parable and short story is no more than a modest effort to illustrate the concept of "Be More With Less" in which probably many of us have already thought before.

While I knew all work and no play wasn’t the way, I thought I would forever be stuck in the cycle of working to live. I thought I would always have a house/car payment, credit card debt and not enough month at the end of the money. I thought I had to work harder to make more, buy more and have more. At one time, I really thought that would make me better somehow. However, I hope this post may serve to someone as an inspiration to slow down, reassess, and get real about how they want to live life.

Leave a comment. Share your experiences and feedback. ¡Be part of the conversation!


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Cranky Gandalf


Posted Using LeoFinance Beta


Just two days ago I bought a ticket that allows me to experience a great festival, one with a super lineup in a nice setting (the woods just below Amsterdam). 200 Euro, wow! But yea, those that started this concept more than a decade ago, probably became millionaires. Most of the artists playing can afford themselves a really good life since their income is at worst, average, but for many 10's time's average income. Probably something like 100 to 500 people eat very very well as a result of this event. The rest of the people, those that like to enjoy this festival, those that pay to be part of this event, kinda like 40.000 individuals have to work hard to get the 200 Euro collected, just to be allowed to be part of this event. Not even counting the drinks and food they/we (since I'm one that paid as well) will consume.

Still remember vividly the times when the entrance to a party was zero Euro (based on tip). Where those that organised such events did this out of love, as a hobby. Where all the equipment was collected from the network of peeps with the same mindset, no money was involved. Where we drank and ate what we brought ourselves and shared with others. Where the DJ was of the same quality as this upcoming event; Literally three artists are playing at this upcoming event that I heard more than a few times playing back in the 90s and early 2000s on these 'illegal' parties am describing. Sure, many more legal parties than illegal parties, also back in the day. But those legal parties were more or less a breakeven event in terms of money. Entrance costs were more like 5 to 10% of the costs charged these days, whilst inflation didn't devaluate the Euro that much in the last 2 to 3 decades. Plus the added bonus that the atmosphere in those super low costs and do-it-yourself events usually was much better than these grand events these days.

Basically, the power of money, and the power of money flow. And we all participate in it. It's darn difficult to break such flow. For most of us at least. However, I do very much hope more and more of us will be able to break this flow, at least more often than we do today.

Your content has been voted as a part of Encouragement program. Keep up the good work!

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