Capitalism: I’m confused

I’m really confused by capitalism, or at least by its supporters. I’m desperate to know how people who voted Conservative justified their decision to themselves.

I know a number of people who I otherwise have respect for, people who appear to care for the most vulnerable in society, people who don’t appear motivated purely by financial gain, people who I would otherwise have thought selfless, that voted Tory at the last election.

Now I can understand the fat cats, the middle classes, the upper classes and directors of corporations wanting to look after themselves. Most of them merely pay lip service to the needs of the most vulnerable- making the odd donation, providing a corporate social responsibility agenda, organising the odd team-building volunteer day etc. They’re so wrapped up in their own world that they genuinely don’t understand the needs of those at the other end of society, despite what they may claim. Of course there are exceptions, but I don’t think I’ve painted an unfair picture.

The working classes were won over this time around by the incredibly bias reporting of Murdoch’s empire. When I returned home shortly before the election I was genuinely shocked by much of the pub talk. The Sun had done a fantastic job selling Cameron’s lies to their readership, so much so that my pointing out of flaws in Tory policy were brushed over without a flicker of concern. It was then that I realised what a good PR job Murdoch had done for Cameron.

But what confuses me is those people who appear to genuinely believe that capitalism can provide equality for all. I’d really like to hear the thought process leading to this conclusion, because I can’t find ANYTHING good in capitalism at all. I accept it as a necessary evil in the modern world and even Ed Miliband (who would take my vote for Labour leader, should I be a Labour supporter) talked recently about the importance of capitalism in winning the next election. But Miliband’s strength is seen in his ability to mix Blairite capitalism with strong socialist values.

I have some questions for those that voted for Cameron: Did you really believe that he would ensure that “we’re all in this together”? Did you really believe that he would ensure that the most vulnerable in society are protected? Or did you fall for the spin campaign aimed at making you angry at the 2.5 million people claiming incapacity benefit? Did the thought of £15billion of tax fraud even cross your mind? I imagine it didn’t, because Cameron didn’t want it to. He’d much rather that you look at the £1billion cost of benefit fraud and error.

I’m fully aware that the socialists are much likely to answer my questions, but this isn’t meant to be an attack on those that voted Tory – I’d genuinely like to know how one justifies capitalism morally.


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