Capitalism v. Socialism in the Oil Spill
E.J. Dionne has a column in the Washington Post that runs under the headline, "Gulf oil spill offers a lesson in capitalism vs. socialism." He writes:
'Deregulation' is wonderful until we discover what happens when regulations aren't issued or enforced. Everyone is a capitalist until a private company blunders. Then everyone starts talking like a socialist, presuming that the government can put things right because they see it as being just as big and powerful as its Tea Party critics claim it is.
But the truth is that we have disempowered government and handed vast responsibilities over to a private sector that will never see protecting the public interest as its primary task.
President Obama, of all people, had a fine response to this line of argument in his press conference:
Well, BP's interests are aligned with the public interest to the extent that they want to get this well capped. It's bad for their business; it's bad for their bottom line. They're going to be paying a lot of damages, and we'll be staying on them about that.
So I think it's fair to say that they want this thing capped as badly as anybody does. And they want to minimize the damage as much as they can.
Thanks to reader-partner-community member-watchdog-content co-creator M. for sending the link to the Washington Post column.
by Ira Stoll | May 27, 2010 at 9:00 pm
Related Topics: Energy, President Obama, Press
receive the latest by email: subscribe to the free futureofcapitalism.com mailing list