Any economic system is only as good as its administration. How do you gauge “excessive” profit in capitalism? Capitalism is production for profit; the objective is profit, not a better standard of living for the nation. If the nation happens to have better livelihoods as a result of capitalist advances then that is primarily coincidental or merely to placate them because the owners of capital are aware that they are exploiting the nation’s labour.
Capitalism, at base, means you work in an enterprise and your annual labour produces goods or services that are worth millions but you are only paid the minimum union wage or the bare minimum to ensure you survive, whichever is the lesser amount; both being influenced further by the amount of available labour against the demand. This is the principle regardless of whether one is a wage-earner or salaried; the difference between what is paid out as income and what is produced is of course accumulated by the handful of shareholders.
In other words your labour is converted into wealth that goes into someone else’s bank account while you are only paid enough to ensure you stay alive and work and can afford to raise a supply of labour that is educated to ensure functionality in a capital enterprise while you distract yourself with religion, alcohol and the pursuit of trivial activities which make your life seem rich.
Now, this difference in incomes is not the evil of capitalism. The evil is that capitalism presupposes an equal starting point for every individual to enter this world, apply his/her talent and then prosper. Unfortunately this is not the case.
Capitalism is tainted by slavery, colonialism, racism, imperialism, nepotism, apartheid and other institutionalized barriers and injustices that, right from the onset, ensure that there are huge differences in the prospects of one child from the next.
The barriers and injustices of these isms are CURRENT not historic. These isms are extreme forms of capitalism which in turn create extreme forms of wealth accumulation. Wealth runs through generations that is why one can dispossess white Zimbabwean farmers of their land but they will stay right on in Zimbabwe living comfortably for generations on wealth accumulated, thriugh generations, since the 1900s, their children and grandchildren will go to private schools and to Wits and Stellenbosch, and then have enterprises off THAT wealth.
The AVERAGE educated black Zimbabwean child currently has “___” (fill in the blank) SA, UK, US, AUS, NZ to look forward to after school regardless of whether one went to a mission secondary school or a private college, regardless of whether one studies law at UCT or leaves school after “O”s. You will end up enduring unfulfilling work in “___”. That is the difference between being a child of a capitalist and being a child of a capitalist worker. The fact that one is a council worker doing menial work in Cheltenham and the other is a Wits B.Com graduate treated as a third rate employee and token company darkie is of no relevance.
Mind, there is an acceptance of being a perpetual worker – the comfort now being the attainment of a minimum status level – as a worker.
Which begs the question, what black African, in their right mind, knowing the past and present consequences of capitalism on the livelihood of ALL black people, still ponders over the rights and wrongs of capitalism?
Usually, it’s those African emigrants living in western “capitalist” countries who, because they associate with a white proletariat, lose the blatantly racial and ism-laden context of capitalism in Africa. What you do not realize is that all the western countries are socialist in relation to their citizens (welfare, free public education, health benefits…etc) at the expense of developing world labour. Take away all the African, Latin American and Asian labour exploitation, and the attendant profit, and see if Western capital will still be as generous with incomes and social benefits.
The good or bad of capitalism depends on which side of the fence you sit – we sit on the Black African side of the fence and that question is a no-brainer.