Apr. 12th, 2011

Uh oh...

Apr. 12th, 2011 03:04 am
coffeesnob318: (Default)
I may have done something I will regret.

There is a person on my friends list on Facebook who has super extreme political views. They also happen to be in the exact opposite direction of my viewpoint, which I admit can get a little extreme itself. And she is not shy about not only expressing those views (a practice I enthusiastically support) but also ridiculing as stupid and clearly uninformed anyone who does not agree with her (a practice I enthusiastically hate). Our personal conversations have been pretty civil thus far, but I’m always nervous when I respond to something controversial, as there is the possibility that she will respond hatefully and I will then be forced to destroy her. For this reason, I usually decline to comment.

And then she posts this article with her own snide commentary about idiots who have criticisms of our current use of capitalism and the free market (you know, idiots like me).

Ahem.

I’m going to gloss right over his calling people on the left “socialists” (the conservative “s” word). I’m even going to skate right past the fact that he is a minister using his position as a means of advancing his political views, an act which I find deplorable.

But let me get one thing straight: a criticism is not an outright rejection. In fact, when I criticize something, it’s usually because I think it has a beautiful potential of which it’s falling woefully short. If I think an idea is utterly useless, why bother criticizing it? Just throw it out altogether. Anyway, capitalism and the free market? Beautiful ideas. In theory. All things being equal and all people being ethical, capitalism and the free market would work like a dream.

The CSA in the article (like most of the CSAs I have ever heard of or experienced) is an example of the free market done well. It’s a partnership, with both sides sharing the costs and the rewards and working together to ensure the best possible outcome for all involved. He hit the nail on the head with the statement that the CSA is capitalism in its “purest form.” It’s how capitalism – all capitalism – should work. And if the free market always worked this way – equitably risky and beneficial for every side – I would never have a single criticism of it. It would make being an ethical consumer in this country so much easier. Unfortunately, the tendency to err on the side of the shady to make a little more profit is too tempting for many involved in capitalist ventures to resist. Capitalism and the free market could be the perfect system. You know - if people weren’t bastards.

So that’s how I responded to her link (I left out the bastard part. That's just a little treat for all of you). We’ll see how this pans out. This angst I’m feeling? That’s what I get for clicking on something she posted on the same day I watched Black Gold (the coffee industry documentary) and right after reading an article about an IKEA branch that mistreats its workers (which is especially sad to me since 1) I love me some IKEA and 2) they’re based in a country that actually has labor standards. Sweden will be so disappointed). Given the state of mind I am in, I just couldn’t pass it up.

Like I said, I may regret this.

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May 2013

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