Tim Knowles Thanks for your close reading! In a previous post, I dug into the difference between capitalism, commerce, and trade.
Wait, What the Hell Is Capitalism?
We can’t escape until we agree what we’re leaving behind
My operating definition of capitalism is the following:
An economic system in which enterprises seek efficiency innovations and resource control with the aim of reducing labor and material costs, thus increasing revenue that can be reinvested in new technologies with the goal of outpricing competitors, monopolizing market share, and maximizing the potential for future profits.
If you aren’t trying to grow, you aren’t a capitalist. You’re just engaging in commerce. And commerce is just trade with currency as an intermediary that allows for more efficient, abstract exchange. Trade is more or less an essential component of what it means to be human. Perpetual-growth capitalism, AKA capitalism, is a cancer on our species and the planet.
But I agree we need a new term to describe sustainable exchange!