Capitalism is a system, in which ownership and investment of the means of production, distribution and exchange of wealth are in the hands of a few people. This means that individuals and corporations own the factors of production, as opposed to the government. Capitalism is built on the belief of economic freedom. This freedom can be described to have two dimensions. These dimensions are freedom of economic choice and freedom of enterprise. In the current world, development of the American capitalism has shaped the histories of both the United States and the rest of the world to a considerable degree. Capitalism in America was first introduced as a framework of teaching. A free market economy or system is what America has adopted and continues to spread it among the rest of the world. People in a capitalist economy are free to make their own economic decisions. The enterprise freedom is seen when there is the freedom to own and operate a business. It also entails the freedom to make all business decisions, limited only by competition and interplay of forces of demand and supply in the marketplace. Central to the belief in economic freedom or capitalism is the concept of private property. America has demonstrated to the rest of the world that capitalism is the only process that can bring any development in the economy. In America, services, goods and other factors of production are privately held by corporations of individuals. As owners of the productive resources in the economy, individuals or corporations have the right to dispose or use their property as they see fit (Gindin and Panitch 34).
At the begging of the twenty first century, the pervasiveness and power of the American capitalism has become common wisdom. The equation that links open markets to democratic institutions has become a concept that is commonly accepted in the world. The use of words, such as liberalization and reforms, has defined the global market and ideas replacing the regulatory regimes. Since civilization developed more than 5000 years ago, nations and countries have applied various economic systems aimed at the development. In many nations around the world, resources are scarce, and governments, individuals or corporations have always decided on different methods on how to allocate these resources. Many nations, particularly in the developing and underdeveloped countries, have tried different methods such as mercantilism and feudalism. However, many people around the world are waking to the realization that these systems are inadequate and curtailing their development. This has led to the development of the two competing systems of capitalism and communism. However, with the collapse of communist regimes in the Eastern Europe in the late 1980s and early 1990s, capitalism has remained to be the prominent system. Currently, there is no argument that capitalism is the perfect system to develop a nation or a country. The United States has been the force behind the development of capitalism in the modern world. Capitalism has been cited as the most effective system in the allocation of resources so as to promote economic development and grant individual liberties. Historically, capitalism has enabled societies to live decent lives and own property. This is what has informed the United States and thus continues to promote capitalism in the world (Hutton and Giddens 53).
The world has been left with no option but to embrace capitalism. In the twenty first century, capitalism has been attributed to superiority of competitive markets. Globalization today has appeared to be the natural outcome of capitalism as a process. However, with global markets roiling and increasingly becoming reliant on state intervention to stay afloat, it has become clear that world markets and states are not opposing capitalism. The modern day capitalism has been said to have a very close relationship with the United Sates. The US has played a role of an informal empire that is helping to promote capital movements and free trade. The United States has superintended the reorganization of other nations in approval of competitive marketplaces and coordinated the management of increasingly financial crises. America has played a special role in the formation of the present day global capitalism. The US has promoted free trade and financed global capitalism. It has achieved this by controlling world agencies such as World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (Robinson 76).
According to the Americans, capitalism is the most successful wealth creating economic system that the world may ever know. America believes that capitalism helps in the creation of wealth through advancing to higher levels. Capitalism is thus associated with the increased technological sophistication and productivity. There have been many ideologies that aim at defending the American capitalism in the world today. These ideologies have been echoed by business leaders, politicians, educators and business leaders. This has made many issues contemporary to the American capitalism very confusing to casual onlookers. This is because various ideologies put forward to defend the American leadership in capitalism may take opposing positions. In the modern world, the American capitalism reflects that there is no single monolithic ideology. The ideological war that the US is currently fighting on the international front against communism is the major modern war. This is especially in the developing and underdeveloped nations. A lot of literature can articulate that in the today’s world, the greatest war of all is being targeted on peoples of underdeveloped countries. This is in the form of means and systems by which economic development should occur or happen. To many people living in the underdeveloped nations, the division of the world into communism and capitalism presents only two basic alternatives for economic development (Hutton and Giddens 79).
For the United States, the end of World War II did not leave the world in peace. World battles were shifted to different groups and onto different levels. America has undertaken to spread capitalism to the entire world. The world has become split into either capitalism or communism. Capitalism and communism have been described as more dangerous wars than the national ones. The world has, thus, become a battle ground for major world powers or capitalism and communism. The United State Information Agency is a good example of the American aim of leadership in capitalism. This agency has recognized the problem of selling and producing an economic ideology to the newly developing nations. The agency is mandated for examining almost any publication in America. The US feels unsafe in selling its ideologies of capitalism. This was evidenced by a former president of the United States Chamber of Commerce John Coleman in this regard before the International Advertising Conference. He complained that America and the Western World had lost the power of explaining their vision of the prosperous society. He also urged that a coherent doctrine should be adopted or formulated so that the United States could tell the world of the basic elements of capitalism. He said that America had failed in determining its role of spreading its ideologies to the rest of the world. Outstanding people in history, such as Karl Marx and Mannheim, paid close attention to the world ideology. What these great leaders meant is that ideas, beliefs and modes of thinking of the Americans should be spread to the rest of the world. Capitalism in America was conceptualized in the early 1900. Since this time, America has advocated and spread capitalism to the entire world. It has emerged as a superpower country behind this drive (Robbins 86).
The American capitalism has not only been evident in the economic arena, but also in the democracy. According to America, economic and political capitalism cannot be realized in isolation. A capitalist economic system working under a totalitarian political power is not possible. It is for this reason that America has embarked on democratization of the world. The United States has engaged in foreign wars so as to promote democracy in these nations. It has engaged in wars in Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq. The United States has accepted democracy as a key or fundamental tenet toward capitalism. Classical capitalism in America is disseminated through the publication of the National Association for Manufactures (NAM) and the Foundation for Economic Education. In classical ideology, it centers on the concepts of individually owned private property in a decentralized market. Under the law requiring the registration of lobbyists in America, the House Committee showed that 5 labor organizations, four farm organizations and 153 corporations reported that their expenditure was used to influence legislation in America. In the United States, it has also been reported that corporations have spent $ 32.1 million to influence legislation. The amount totaling to $ 27 million was donated to organizations producing and disseminating ideological materials related to capitalism. These findings indicate the extent to which the United States is going so as to enhance the United States’ leadership in capitalism (Alperovitz 104).
One of the major capitalist ideologies in the United States today has remained to be classical capitalism. This is because it is the oldest tradition and the most developed theoretically. Classical capitalism has been able to draw upon the body of the classical economic theory, and this has led to its adoption by the rest of the world. The United States has also been on the forefront in the leadership of managerial ideology of capitalism. America plays a crucial role in training professional managers of large corporations in the world. Managerial capitalism in America has been fueled and disseminated by the Committee of Economic Development. Through the local groups, the CED publishes a number of studies bearing upon local problems. On the national level, the CED publishes a news bulletin, which is later taught to international managers heading international corporations. Managerial capitalism proclaims a great transformation in the world on how business is conducted (Wilde 94)
From the late 1990s to the late 2007, the United States’ biotechnology engineering was thriving. There were increased capital investments in the biopharmaceutical start-ups at extraordinary high levels. This is an example of a government supporting innovative enterprise in a capitalist nation. According to the United States’ capitalism, the latter will bring the increased innovation and productivity in the country. As a superpower, the United States will continue its leadership in capitalism. This is because America remains a key nation that has the power to influence how the world wealth is distributed and allocated. The United States will continue to use its position in the world to influence policy making and implementation of these policies. It will continue influencing how internationals corporations and organizations such as the United Nations, the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund dispense their responsibilities. Since history has the capability to inform the future, it is expected that America will continue exporting its capitalist ideologies to the rest of the world. Two-thirds of the population of the world is living in poverty. Most of these people are living in the underdeveloped nations, and they will have a choice to adapt to the most consistent economic system. It will be worth to note that most of the underdeveloped nations are adapting the concepts and ideologies of economic development and political democracy. This will make America continue being a leader in global capitalism (Merino 81).