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Two Cheers for Capitalism

In today’s Wall Street Journal, Daniel Henninger explores the fact that while the populist left—whether it be in New York City, in France, or more broadly throughout the United States—has demonstrated considerable prowess at taking power, it’s had a much more difficult time governing. Why? Because the left’s quest for social justice differs from the enduring pursuit of justice—which is the proper end of governance.

In its own way, a new video we’ve released today describes this same fact. Since 1800, the rise of modern capitalism, more than any other factor, has improved the world remarkably, bringing new forms of medicine, new technologies, new opportunities for entrepreneurship, and an expansive rise of human rights and the rule of law to places where it was previously unimaginable. Not a bad end-goal, for elected leaders like Mayor de Blasio, President Obama, and President François Hollande.

Of course, free enterprise even in the most advanced countries remains prone to cronyism, by powerful business elites and by corrupt government officials who use their position for their own advancement rather than the common good. In still too much of the West (and East), cultural classes have diverged and the bottom half lacks access to monetary capital, good education, healthy cultural habits, and the relational capital to fully pursue their God-given potential. But that’s precisely where free enterprise—true economic liberty, reinforced by limited but real government, and the kind of humility Mr. Henninger and the rest of us long for—offers real hope.

During an uncertain time in which left and right and East and West are on the brink, this short video offers clarion cheers for capitalism, the least-bad economic system the world has ever known: