Capitalism has been stolen; we need to steal it back.
Capitalism has been hijacked. It’s been stolen by politicians and crony capitalists. Crony capitalists use political power instead of competition to gain unfair advantages. People are either born into this “class” or they are sleazy enough to pay someone off to “join” it.
Many of the largest corporations and richest families in the United States, and around the world, are Cronies. And through the actions of many of these organizations and families, through their “relationships” with politicians, they have used a form of “capitalism” – crony capitalism – to harm society and only enrich and benefit themselves and their families.
To make matters worse, academics and, unfortunately, the church, have used this model as an example for what they believe capitalism to be as a whole. They have used this misguided belief to perpetuate the notion that capitalism is evil and that business owners are only looking out for themselves.
Why does this matter?
It matters for 2 reasons:
- This is not just some academic exercise or philosophical discussion. These attacks on “capitalism” are really attacks on business ownership.
- The world is full of business owners who actually want to (and do) make an impact in the lives of others as well as take care of themselves and their families
But before we can use our businesses to make a meaningful difference in the lives of others, we must first steal capitalism back. It’s not that difficult, really. Stealing Capitalism Back has to do with a mindset of what capitalism and business ownership is and how it can be used to make an impact – a meaningful difference – in the lives of others and yet still look to make a profit so we can take care of our families.
Capitalism, as an economic system, isn’t evil. In fact, capitalism – true, free market capitalism – is the only economic system based on free choice; it is, ultimately, the free exchange of ideas, goods, and services.
I’m not naive to think that no harm can come from capitalism; it does allow for exploitation and negative impact. But, so do all the other systems. Capitalism, however, has the advantage of being the only economic system to allow business owners to make a positive impact and yet still find a way to take care of their families.
Impact Capitalists are Stealing Capitalism Back
We’re not trying to solve the world’s problems (we’ve got enough of our own). We’re simply trying to provide products and services that make life easier, more efficient, and simply, better for others.
And yet, we have no voice.
The business owners that are celebrated tend to be those who are either becoming billionaires, often by phony, crony means, or those who are social entrepreneurs who are trying to fix the world’s social problems, which are often driven by ideology or activism, and not necessarily by what the market is asking for.
But what about the business owners that make up 99% of all businesses…sole proprietors to manufacturers with 450 employees and all in between?
- The electrical contractor bring electricity into a factory
- Owners of butcher shops and bakeries
- Cabinet makers
- Technology consultants
- Owners of media companies, trying to redesign the paradigm of content creation and distribution to get wholesome, family entertainment to people who no longer accept the mainstream’s version of wholesome
- The physician/scientist trying to get life altering treatments to the masses
- The owners of an auto body shop
- The owner of a manufacturing plant
- Any business owner or investor using their resources to earn a living and make the world a better place
These people can be Impact Capitalists.
They are using business ownership to make a positive impact – or a meaningful difference – in the lives of others. But they are, at the same time, using their business ownership to make a profit to take care of their business, their employees, and their families.
This is good.
This is how we’re stealing capitalism back.
And as long as there are no illegal or political means used, pursing a profit is righteous, both in the scriptural sense and how a surfer uses the word when shredding an epic wave.
And for pursuing both Impact and Profit, business owners – especially impact capitalists – should be celebrated. Because they’re the heroes of this epic battle to Steal Capitalism Back.