Why Capitalism Is Good

Wal MartSo much is said regarding ‘greed’ and ‘corporations’.  Let’s not forget that until the advent of free trade and individual property rights – the common peasant was destined to farm the same land with the same tools as their ancestors.

The benefits of free trade:

NEW YORK (MarketWatch) — Wal-Mart Stores Inc. pushed down prices for some generic prescription drugs to just $4 eight years ago, setting a new industry standard. Now it is trying to do the same for seeing a doctor.

On Friday, a Walmart Care Clinic opened in Dalton, Ga., six months after Walmart U.S., the retailer’s WMT, +0.27%   biggest unit, entered the business of providing primary health care. It now operates a dozen clinics in rural Texas, South Carolina and Georgia and has increased its target for openings this year to 17.

An office visit costs $40, which Walmart U.S. says is about half the industry standard, and just $4 for Walmart U.S. employees and family members with the company’s insurance. A pregnancy test costs just $3, and a cholesterol test $8. A typical retail clinic offers acute care only. But a Walmart Care Clinic also treats chronic conditions such as diabetes. (Walmart U.S. also leases space in its stores to 94 clinics owned by others that set their own pricing.)

“It was very important to us that we establish a retail price in the health-care industry because price leadership matters to us,” said Jennifer LaPerre, a Walmart U.S. senior director responsible for health and wellness, in an interview.

Health Care is just another commodity that, when subjected to the free market, will bend to the advantage of the consumer.

2 responses to “Why Capitalism Is Good

  1. Capitalism is good, but only functions when well regulated. Without a regulatory state, capitalism is circumvented by so-called capitalists who want to use their power to manipulate the market and create an advantage for themselves. Capitalists would like to avoid the discipline capitalism creates through markets! Markets are not magic; to operate effectively, they need rule of law and regulation.

    • Without a regulatory state, capitalism is circumvented by so-called capitalists who want to use their power to manipulate the market and create an advantage for themselves. Capitalists would like to avoid the discipline capitalism creates through markets! Markets are not magic; to operate effectively, they need rule of law and regulation.

      This is a common theme from you Scott, you have been consistent in this belief for a good many years. However, try as I might, I cannot fully understand what the implications of this are.

      For example, no one disputes that for market capitalism to work you need a functioning state that recognizes:

      1. Property law
      2. Contract law

      The whole thing breaks down if I agree to pay $4.00 for a gallon of milk and you deliver 1/2 gallon of milk mixed with 1/2 gallon of water. Further, it is essential that a man owns what he produces or we degenerate into a state controlled market like Soviet Russia.

      But I don’t think that you mean that – I think that there is something else there. I think your ‘regulation’ includes such measures as ‘fair prices’ and ‘living wages’.

      Can you be more specific in your thoughts on regulation? Can you identify instances in American markets where there is none or little regulation as you mean it and then a place where there is sufficient?

      — Perhaps an example are meat inspectors. I think the left would agree that we need state meat inspectors to make sure that greedy capitalists don’t sell us rotten meat. Is that what you mean?

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