TO THE EDITOR: Whether practiced by Christians or Secular Humanists, the concept of “from each according to his ability and to each according to his needs “ has a sorry history.
From the church in Thessalonica to the Pilgrims at Plymouth Rock and from the communes of Paris to the Marxist experiment in Russia, collectivist societies couldn’t overcome human nature.
The powerful engine of unbridled capitalism also has had its dark chapters in creating economic turbulence and exploiting workers. How do we overcome that?
First of all, capitalism has to be subservient to Democracy. America, unlike many other industrial societies, is learning to control this powerful force to the benefit of all.
Anti-trust laws and the SEC (with its margin requirements, full-disclosure provisions and insider-information prohibitions) are powerful tools in controlling malfeasance by unscrupulous persons.
Broad-based financing, such as from 401ks, mutual funds and government retirement system investments, provide a partnership between capitalism and democracy. At the same time, worker protection can be obtained through union membership.
Republican laissez-faire tendencies and the Democrat push for low-income housing without regard to affordability, along with the Fed’s near-zero interest rates, led to the recent rise and collapse of the housing bubble. A substantial downpayment requirement, like that on stocks, would have prevented the housing bubble and its aftermath.
Voters, elect economically astute leaders. Fad presidents, like Cabbage Patch dolls and Pet Rocks, belong in the closet.
KENNETH G. BARCOMB