Drop the conspiracy theories. Capitalists do not conspire to have a certain number of people succeed at business.
"Conspiracy theories" have nothing to do with it. That is just a convenient label designed to demonize
a particular argument so as to draw attention away from the fact that you have no valid counter
argument to present. A "conspiracy theory", by its very nature, involves speculation about the actions of specific people at a specific time and place. However, all I have done is observe general social trends and then draw a conclusion from those observations by way of deductive reasoning. To illustrate what I mean, let me break down my argument into its simplest form:
: Capitalism necessitates wage labour.
: If wage workers cease to exist, capitalism will cease to function.
: If every wage worker abandoned wage labour in favour of starting their own business, wage workers would cease to exist.
: If every wage worker abandoned wage labour in favour of starting their own business, capitalism would cease to function.
: It is contrary to the interests of capitalists NOT to suppress a certain number of small businesses because this would mean that they would no longer have access to wage labour.
Notice how I start with the very broad statement that capitalism is based upon wage labour. From here, I go step by step and build
each subsequent premise of my argument off of the ones that preceded it. By using logic
, the premises of my argument gradually become more refined
until I reach the very concise conclusion that not
suppressing a certain number of small businesses would be contrary to the capitalists' interests.
This process of going from a broad concept to a concise conclusion is known as deductive reasoning
, and it differs substantially from mere "conspiracy theories", which usually start with very specific
(alleged) facts from which is derived a very broad conclusion.( This, in fact, is known as in
ductive reasoning; and, as you can probably guess, is the antonym
of deductive reasoning.)
In short, I have sufficiently established the fact that not
suppressing a certain number of small businesses is contrary to the interests of the capitalists. This, of course, would remain true even if the capitalists decided
not to suppress small business which, clearly, would mean acting
contrary to their own interests. Taking actions that go against one's own interests certainly isn't unheard of
in our society, but it usually defies all logic. So the real question we are faced with is this: do we want to live in a society that is structured in such a way where there exists an elite class against whose interests it is to permit the self-sufficiency of the working class?
However, another point that should be raised is that is that, for the small businesses that do
succeed, there will ultimately come a time when they will grow large enough that they themselves will have to start employing workers for a wage. Or, put a different way, this is what they will have
to do if they want to have even a chance
of competing with the major corporations. It is this fact that makes your argument inherently self-contradictory: according to you, the alternative to wage labour for the workers is to start their own business. However, assuming that their business ever does
grow large enough, they themselves will have to employ workers for a wage. You asked me earlier to explain why "everyone
can't start their own business". It is really quite simple: in order for a business to succeed, it must grow large enough to employ workers for a wage. This is where the big oxymoron arrizes, because for everyone
to own their own business, no one
could be a wage worker. The two concepts simply cancel eachother out. Therefore, the reality is that, under capitalism, someone
will always have to be the boss who gives commands and someone
will always have to be the worker who takes orders. If one worker becomes a boss, another one will take their place.
Perhaps you will argue, however, that people have the right
to become bosses and employ workers for a wage. Before responding with the obvious, I will first point out to you that taking this position requires you to concede
that everyone can't become a business owner under capitalism. This means that you have to retract
the argument that you have been making up until this point before you can approach our debate from this new angle. If you would like to know why
it is you must do this, I will explain it to you by organizing my argument into its individual premises as I did earlier so it will be made perfectly clear to you:
: As I said earlier, in order for everyone to own their own business, no one could be a wage worker.
: The argument that a worker has the right to become a boss and employ other workers for a wage is based upon the idea that wage labour should exist.
: The argument that everyone can own their own business ignores the fact that a business must grow large enough to employ workers for a wage if it is to have even a chance of competing with major corporations.
: In order to maintain the argument that every worker can start their own business under capitalism, you must reject the idea that capitalism is dependent upon wage labour because, as shown by Premise 1, wage labour would cease to exist if everyone owned their own business.
: If you wish to support the argument that a worker has the right to become a boss and employ other workers for a wage, you must first abandon the argument that all workers have the opportunity to start their own businesses under capitalism.
So, with everything that I have said in this post, what possible directions could our debate now go in? Well, let's explore our options: first, you can argue that wage labour is perfectly just and fair. However, as I have just explained, you must first concede that starting a small business is an option that is not open to most workers. This would probably be easiest for you
because it means defending capitalism from an ethical
standpoint rather than based upon how capitalism is actually structured
. The reason I say that this would probably be easier for you is because ethics tend to be subjective and, for the most part, no one's value system is any more or less valid than anyone else's precisely because
of that subjectivity. Therefore, rather than arguing about how capitalism is structured (which is fairly objective) when you may or may not have all of your facts straight, arguing from an ethical perspective would be easier because your value system is essentially on equal footing with mine.
The other option open to you is maintaining that all workers are able to start their own business under capitalism and, hence, to continue arguing in the arena of objectivity about how capitalism is actually structured
. If this is the case, I will probably wind up simply reiterating the points that I have already made because, frankly, I am quite confident that I have already discredited your argument even if you are unable to comprehend how
And this brings me to the point with which I will conclude this post. I would highly recommend that you read this post numerous times so as to understand all of the nuances it contains. Even just reading over it a second time would probably help because when you first read it, you will be reading it without any expectations. However, upon a second reading, you can read it with the knowledge that there are many subtle points that require close attention. Have a nice day.