Quora: “Does capitalism encourage people to act in unethical ways to compete with other people?”

My answer:

No. It encourages people to engage in voluntary activity. In a competitive market under Capitalism, there’s incentive for workers to offer good customer service to their customers as they want those customers to come back and not go over to their competitors. Capitalism encourages people to innovate, to become entrepreneurs, and in that way to offer people new things they may want. Under Capitalism, the entrepreneurs who can best foresee what people want in the future will earn the most profits, while those who do the worst will suffer the most losses (more on this here: What Profit Really Means: A Book Review of Ludwig von Mises’ “Profit and Loss”). Capitalism offers people what they want, and if that may be unethical, that’s a problem that must be solved culturally (religiously or philosophically), not economically. Capitalism offers the poor the opportunity to become rich by becoming entrepreneurs. Capitalism also offers smaller businesses to have a chance against bigger businesses (more on this here: Pro-Market Does Not Mean Pro-Business – Stefan M. Kløvning – Medium). The list goes on. If Capitalism wasn’t implemented to the degree starting the Industrial Revolution, who would’ve known how much different the present would’ve been (more on this here: Causes to the Reduction of Child Labor During the Industrial Revolution).

 

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