Sorry, Conservatives: There's No Mention of Capitalism in Our Constitution

The low-wage worker movement has underscored a serious lack of understanding of basic economics by most Americans. Thom Hartmann found this out shortly after he published an article for AlterNet titled, “Corporations Should Pay a Living Wage or Face the Death Penalty."

“If you can’t do business in this country in a reasonable way, don’t do business,” Hartmann stated.

Almost immediately after the article was published, trolls took to the message boards to display their serious ignorance of economics. So Hartmann created a video about American capitalism and business owners’ “rights” in order to dispel the conservative trolls’ rumors.

“Sorry ... the United States is not a capitalist country. We are a constitutionally limited, representative democratic republic. And you could argue that ever since the Supreme Court has decided that they really run the show, we are a constitutional monarchy, but we are not a capitalistic country. Capitalism is one of a whole bunch of different forms of economics that exist in the United States," Hartmann reported. 

Also, capitalism and constitutionalism don't quite go together.

“The word 'capitalism' appears nowhere in our founding documents, nowhere in our Constitution," Hartmann added.

What about the commenters' assertion that running a business is a right? Perhaps only if the business operates on the barter system alone.

“I’ll wash your car, you mow my lawn,” Hartmann said. "But what happens if, as I wash your car, I break a window? Who do you appeal to? The court? Suddenly it’s not a free system anymore. In order for an economy to work beyond just wash car/mow lawn—and even with that—you have to have stable currencies, a stable banking system, a predictable and fair court system, actual rules ... transportation ... infrastructure ... a criminal justice system to enforce the rules ... all of which is paid for by We the People," Hartmann explained.


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