Socialism is the problem

2012-09-08 12:07

Businessman and chairman of the Free Market Foundation, Herman Mashaba, was unimpressed by the 24th Socialist International Congress held in Cape Town. He took issue with the organisation blaming capitalism for the global financial crisis.The blame, he said, actually lies at socialism’s door. Fikile-Ntsikelelo Moya asked him to clarify what he meant

By most accounts, the global economic downturn was caused by the sub-prime mortgages in America and whose effects then spread to Europe and the rest of the world.

America can hardly be called a socialist state, why do you blame socialism?

I believe governments should allow individuals to do their own initiatives.

Socialist states cause most economic problems because they like too much legislation.

Why take the money from the public and bail out businesses that fail?

I don’t believe in bailouts.

I would not have done that.

Let the shareholders take the responsibility for that and use the money to build schools and infrastructure.

Why should I, as a taxpayer, bail out a company I have no interest in?

But bailouts were a remedy, not the cause of the problem ...

Do you think if Ford or General Motors had shut down, Americans would not be driving cars?

Another entrepreneur would have seen the opportunity and created a new company.

If Ford collapses tomorrow Fiat or Mashaba Motors will start tomorrow.

Various commissions pointed to corporate greed as the main reason for the great recession, hence the need for greater regulation ...

I am not so naive as to say there is no cowboy mentality.

But that is where you need shareholders to be active.

You don’t need the state.

Most people who go into politics don’t go there to make money, unless you are a corrupt politician.

Why must I trust a politician to take care of my money?

It is our money, we need to look after it.

That is why you have organisations like the JSE and the IOD (Institute of Directors) and a host of corporate governance structures.

The shareholders clearly didn’t do their work

That is why I say you must not bail them out.

If they were happy to relax and enjoy the money, why should they be bailed out using my money?

Isn’t blaming shareholders and not capitalism itself the same as when socialists blame certain leaders for not implementing the system properly and not socialism itself?

Why then do socialists blame capitalism?I agree that two wrongs don’t make a right.

We have to engage.

That’s why I say we have to engage more.

Some of my thinking might be wrong but I don’t want to be shouted down and I will never allow for anyone to be shouted down.

I don’t trust the socialists.

They can never do anything for you and me unless you are in the Politburo or something.

They talk about the poor but don’t care about them.

Your newspaper last week showed that none of the ministers send their children to public schools.

I still don’t understand why you say America is socialist

I am not an expert in American politics or their economic system.

We are not saying the free market system is perfect.

We accept ours is a work in progress.

I believe in the capitalist system because it has given me freedom.

That is why I will do everything in my power to protect it.


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