For some Americans political economic philosophical development stopped with Adam Smith while others regard it as a naturally evolving system requiring no control save that of an invisible hand. It goes without saying that replacing human reason for political and economic design with natural evolution theory is unreasonable. Neither might scientists discover a political-economic philosophy in nature suitable for human beings capable of replacing human reason as if the populous were trees that might be planted in nice neat rows in a forest.
Adam Smith’s treatise on what became known as capitalism; The Wealth of nations, is nearly 225 years old capitalism requires reform to halt its evolution into the oppressive elitist state equivalent to the British royal monopolistic government that Smith that a theory of liberal capitalism was antipathetic too. The concentration of wealth and corporate political power have developed sharply following the end of the Cold War in December 1989.
One might look to the Reagan era both for its brilliancy in working to end the nuclear arms race and Cold War simultaneously with a disposable political-economic philosophy product known as supply-side economics. That temporal philosophy allowed deficit spending to develop military and corporate sectors simultaneously, yet added vast public debt and cuts to public social service spending. That satisfied Ayn Rand enthusiasts that developed as an anti-communist/socialist pro-business guide for people enjoying a profit and ever desirous of lower taxes. A generation have followed the irrational Reagan policies that worked with a divine poetic aesthetic for ending the Cold War that should never have been transformed into a permanent federal policy. Political philosophical economic ideas seem to have died at that time as well. It is a dysfunctional paradigm.
Theorists about capital and monopoly such as Von Mises believed that capitalism would evolve to just a couple of corporations owning most everything in quasi-monopoly. Plainly that isn’t good. The strength of capitalism and democracy are in pluralism rather than in monolithic concentrated political and economic power.
The tax rate before the Reagan administration was more or less fair and had existed since WW II creating generations of steady economic growth. It is true that self-employed individuals with fewer than five employees should pay no more than 20% income tax, however vast tax cuts for the rich unbalancing a vast realm of competition and public democratic self-determination balances have turned capitalism too far toward an elite class of networked economic plutocrats equivalent to the royal monopolists against which Adam Smith’s revolutionary political manifesto revolted.
Foreign aid and ecospheric conservation and restoration policy are also contingent upon the state of the U.S. economy so far as the U.S. contribution goes. The United States will not, within corporatist guide criteria, pursue or fulfill foreign development of ecospheric restoration policies that are counter to prevailing U.S. domestic economic practices. If the United States fails to develop and lead the world with entirely green, sustainable ecospheric and business policies within a democratic criterion it will not provide such policies to poorer nations abroad. International agreements that arty to force from the top down particular national economic practices for the United States are unAmerican and onerous so far as to be received and used poorly for interference with existing national economic methods.
The U.S. government is too happy to give foreign military aid or loans for purchases of U.S. military manufactures because it supports the U.S. military manufacturing sector. If the U.S. economic sector produced a super-abundance of sustainable, low cost affordable energy production, storage and lighting products it would be too happy to provide those to poor foreign nations too (if U.S. infrastructure content also had high-efficiency, low-entropy characteristics).
During the Cold War era U.S. solders served in a defensive role to defend Europe and the reset of the world from communist aggression. They were more toward the defensive dove side rather than hawks. It is ironic that the most hawkish act followed the end of the Cold War when the Democratic Clinton administration finessed away from the baby weak former Soviet Union the integral, historic Russian candy of the Crimea and Ukraine. That act provoked long range schism with returning Russia to post
The Democratic Party have supported a mutts-without-borders immigration policy that provides cheap labor for a hosting nation while letting the top decile concentrate wealth and corporate power. So long as the rich receive tax cuts and women are promoted in a corporatist government new world order they rest content with masses of relocating poor and foreign disorder. Mexico is a great nation physically and easily could be upgraded with new technology to a status that requires no foreign economic volkerwanderung for better wages.
Capitalism can be reformed by passing laws that prevent the over-accumulation of wealth by a tiny minority of Americans. Presently fewer than 10 % of the people receive more than half of the national economic income just as they did in 1929 before the stock market crash. Further tax cuts would send the national income far beyond the tipping point that is actually at 35%. Taxation that keeps the top 10% from controlling more than 35% of U.S. income was the way it was until the Reagan administration (following WWII reforms) when thereafter federal budgeters lost their minds.
Reforming national tax policy today requires more than setting the tax rate on the top ten percent to 75%. It requires reducing the period for exclusive patents to five years. After five years anyone could manufacture a patented product paying ten per cent of profit to the inventor as a royalty.
The nation also needs to assure that everyone of all income levels can afford a patent and not need to be rich to defend one. There should be a national minimum income of one-quarter the average wage available to any unemployed American. Public higher education should be free to all citizens. People should be free to be the best they can be and to pursue higher and abstract goals with the concerns of venality socially such as assault the poor and broke. It would have a salutary effect of reducing crime, gangsterism and poor health as well as the futility of lost time in pursuit of dead end goals.
National health care can be accomplished for low cost through expansion of existing poor people’s clinics and VA Hospitals to provide free walk-in health care for the nation’s poor. Working Americans earning too much for walk-in coverage could take out very low interest health care loans from the federal government for blue moon medical emergencies that would be repayable on favorable terms even after and emergency procedure. It makes little sense for the U.S. Government to subsidize millions of Obamacare policies in effect paying for nothing that is used instead of something material and real. If one out of five Americans needed food subsidies from the U.S. Government, why should the government pay an insurance company for food insurance for all Americans at a higher cost than direct providing of food to those that actually need it?
Obamacare has a kind of mad cow disease economic effect creating space-holes in federal economics that are ill affordable considering the U.S. public debt is about 20 trillion dollars in 2017. Quite likely medical insurance costs for everyone that shouldn’t need government financial or direct medical support could be reduced by reducing patent exclusivity to five years-non-renewable, with 10% royalties from everyone producing a formerly exclusively patent protected product thereafter. Generic drugs and widely produced medical instrumental technological items would drop in price.
Capitalism can be reformed into a more modern form that creates more opportunity for more people while being more ecospherically adaptive, responsible and simultaneously competitive in a positive sense of stimulating invention and rewarding intelligence for creative and efficient design.
Capital reform could limit the number of corporations individual could own shares in to prevent networking corporations with ad hoc monopoly through boardrooms that prevent and control competition. No individual should own shares of more than three corporations.
Progressive taxation on the most rich would stop development of plutocracy and redirect funds into infrastructure, debt repayment and ecospheric restoration.
It would be a good idea to limit the size of any corporation to 100,000 employees again to prevent monopolistic developments and to stimulate intelligence, competition and creative design. Federal policies should create tax advantages and incentives for low entropy added manufacturing procedures that are ecospherically synergistic and restorative.