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2016-09-01

Martin Wolf about Capitalism and democracy

A natural connection exists between liberal democracy — the combination of universal suffrage with entrenched civil and personal rights — and capitalism, the right to buy and sell goods, services, capital and one’s own labour freely. 

They share the belief that people should make their own choices as individuals and as citizens. 

Democracy and capitalism share the assumption that people are entitled to exercise agency. Humans must be viewed as agents, not just as objects of other people’s power.

Yet it is also easy to identify tensions between democracy and capitalism. Democracy is egalitarian. Capitalism is inegalitarian, at least in terms of outcomes.

To maintain legitimacy, economic policy must seek to promote the interests of the many not the few.

Martin Wolf 30 August 2016

More by Martin Wolf at IntCom

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