Charles Pillsbury III

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The dawn of dilbertism

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Scott Adams (aka “the Dilbert guy”) has one of the most interesting and entertaining blogs out there. I’d like to think I’d be as witty and interesting were I to have the money to spend the time just “thinking” as he does… but that’s probably just me being generous with myself. One of his recent posts was all about the “failures” of capitalism and what we can expect in the future.

Things change. It’s the nature of the universe. Yesterday’s greatest ideas give way to ideas that are better, or better suited to the present, or at least different. Change is the only thing on which you can depend.

So what about capitalism?

I think capitalism had a good run, but it will soon be done. Socialism will be too expensive to maintain as the world economies slow, and communism won’t be making a comeback. The economies of the future will be something new.

Capitalism was conceived before the Internet, and before the gears of commerce became computerized. The system could absorb a lot of con artists because they didn’t have the ability to steal fast enough to cripple the system. As you know, that has changed. Crooks in expensive suits now have the ability to swindle trillions, collectively, thanks to the efficiency of the system. And idiots in expensive suits can do even more damage.

[From Scott Adams Blog: The End of Capitalism 12/16/2008]

I don’t know what capitalism’s second act will look like, but it probably involves preventing individuals from being as self-destructive as they would prefer.

[From Scott Adams Blog: Call it Phase II of Capitalism 12/17/2008]

I think two points could be made here (ok, probably more than two points COULD be made, but I’m only going to try and make two). A) Capitalism isn’t pure anymore anyway so this is a moot point, and B) It’s more likely to be a continuous evolution of the free market and capitalism based economic systems than some sort of economic revolution.

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December 29th, 2008 at 4:33 pm

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  1. I’m reading “The Shock Doctrine” right now. It’s a great economics/politics book (albeit a left-leaning one). Thought-provoking for sure. I remember being utterly confused when I took economics in business school. It’s so confusing b/c there are so many angles to approach it from. One thought re: capitalism: at its core it’s about discontentment that causes people to develop solutions for that discontentment which end up causing discontentment…

    Jeff Luce

    29 Dec 08 at 10:47 pm

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