I always get annoyed when Barack Obama is called a socialist or Marxist. This annoyance does not come from any kind of pent up love and affection for the man. Nay, I just call it like it is. The economic system Barack Obama follows is not capitalism or communism but neo-mercantilism.
Mercantilism was a dominant economic system set up in the Late Renaissance and Early Modern period in Europe. Even though it had its roots in parts throughout Europe; especially in the non-free market section of Spain’s Salamanca school, it got the most traction in Great Britain. British merchant Thomas Mun was considered one of mercantilism’s greatest proponents.
Mercantilism is the mistaken belief that the prosperity of a state is wholly dependent upon its supply of capital, the global balance of trade is unchangeable (unchangeable as in a zero sum game) and that one party may only benefit at the expense of another. In a nutshell, the government has to manage the economy through a protectionist trade policy (either towards domestic corporations or friends of the current regime) using prohibitive taxation, tariffs or extremely restrictive licenses to do business and the total confiscation of gold and silver in favor of domestic monetary units.
What is a neo-mercantilist? Instead of viewing trade and commerce as between nations, as the old mercantilists used to posit, it views all trade in the domestic market as trade between nations. In neo-mercantilism all economic activity between two parties that are not supporters of the state should be clamped down by excessive taxation and restrictive licensing laws to start and maintain a business. It also incorporates aspects of Socialism, with redistribution of wealth and the control of the means of economic production. There is also a smattering of Keynesianism; a school of thought heavily influenced by mercantilism, where government must infuse the economy with massive spending to boost start the market.
This fallacious system is alive and well with the Obama regime. If it isn’t him giving waivers from Obamacare to companies that supported his election campaign like McDonald’s, his giving General Electric (one of his biggest supporters) cart blanche to build a clean burning coal plant while burdening every other company that produces coal fuel with taxes and regulations that leave them bankrupt and Obama giving General Electric a special waiver from his oppressive ‘global warming laws’ while leaving other businesses to eat cake.
Mercantilism died when it was torn apart by great thinkers like Adam Smith, David Hume, Dudley North and John Locke. Reality also dealt mercantilism a fatal blow. When food prices went up, when factories were closing and people were left homeless on the streets people got angry and kicked the bums who supported this dastardly system out of office and into the streets. Mercantilism was one of the major stimuli that kick started the American Revolution; even if ghouls like Alexander Hamilton only wanted to replace one economic dictator for one born and raised in the U.S.A.
Neo-mercantilism will die like its much-maligned grandfather. Reality will set in, when food prices sore and affordable energy is a thing of the past, people will get mad. When people lose everything, they lose it. All politics comes down to the pocket book. These elites think they can squash all commerce that does not favor them; even when that competition is by leaps and bounds more economically efficient than they are. Free markets are the only true natural economic order. It is human nature. Any impingement on this system through any sort of economic central planning is a perversion of human nature. Economic central planning is just as bad as a child molestation or infanticide.
Obama is not a socialist. His economic policy does have elements of Marxism. But, the Marxist argument is a way to get you arguing over that while Obama and his cronies swoop in and discredit every argument you make. He is a neo-mercantilist. That fact is irrefutable. He is killing this country and economy through this foolish policy. Attack him on this. It might be a bit heady for some Americans. I have faith in the intelligence of the American people. So should you.