Having once run for public office – the New York State Assembly – my positions were more or less honed during an electoral battle against a far left entrenched incumbent. Although, truth be told, depending on the issue, I was variously described by my two opponents together as either a “dangerous right-winger” or an “out-of-touch liberal” during that race. I’ll just have to assume that most people would probably label me as either slightly right-of-center or as a squishy moderate.
At least politically.
But I was long ago persuaded that of all the economic systems that have ever been imposed, capitalism has been – by far – the most successful in lifting more people out of poverty and into economic freedom than any other.
One need only look at, in real time, the East Germany – West Germany, North Korea – South Korea, and pre-Castro – Castro “experiments” with an objective eye to be so convinced.
Coupled with a democratic political system, free markets – along with a system for the protection of private property rights and the judicial enforcement of contracts – tend to create an unbeatable environment of personal and economic liberty.
And, while others will no doubt vigorously object (and can certainly point to historical events to the contrary to advance their arguments), I believe that this political-economic combination also imposes substantial constraints which tend to, more often than not, curb destructive international ambitions.
In short, I find that democratic capitalism is the most moral, least oppressive, most innovative system ever devised by man. (Some of my thoughts in this regard were framed early on by Michael Novak’s book, The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism.)
That said, being a free market, economic conservative does not mean acquiescing to corporate control of the economy, or unregulated corporate and union monopolies, or an unfettered government-corporate nexus – often called crony capitalism.
On the contrary, those very things result in markets which are neither free nor conservative – economically or politically. They stifle free and open competition, and they can become forces of overwhelming greed, avarice, and destruction.
There's more at the link and it's well worth your time. A compelling case is made not that the Pope is a socialist but that he is in fact a Catholic. Go figure.
An excellent read in my view.