Every time I visit the market, mall or just a shop to buy something, I get a notion that life is unfair. Then I remember that in the world that I live in, people are free to do whatever they may to make profits. Prices go up and down in no particular order, and people cannot do anything about it. Today, I visited my favorite mall to buy and item I always buy at thirty dollars. But, the price had gone up to fifty dollars, and when I asked for an explanation, I was told that the item was on demand. Well, that was a good explanation, but that did not explain why it was suddenly so expensive. I was angry that I was not consulted first on my view about the prices. However, the companies that produce these products do not answer or consult the consumer about prices. All they want is to make profits. I did not buy the item because I was obviously frustrated, but it got me thinking about the economy that I live in today. What is the reason behind this expensive price on commodities?
Although capitalism is crucial for people to progress every day, capitalism has been marred by greed and dictatorship that uses the material things in the face of ordinary consumers. Marxism is a theory advanced by Karl Marx which discusses social gratifications and the impact it has on people's lives. According to, Marx & Engels, 22, capitalism is a system of economic trade based on market exchange. An economic system has the private sector hold a higher ground in production and accumulation of profits. According to Karl Max, capitalism is organized around the concept on CAPITOL, which means the ownership of business and control is by the employers, while the employees produce goods and services in exchange for wages (Marx & Engels, 10). On the other hand, Max Weber states that capitalism varies by how the government regulates the private ownerships and economic activities (Weber, 29). Notably, Capitalism is a market economy where the prices of products and services solely depend on the buyers and sellers of the goods. This means that in a capitalistic system people are free to buy and sell products and make profit by whatever means they can.
In the business world, labor is equivalent to human capital. The businesses use people as their image and then pay them in the form of wages. On the other hand, the same businesses rely on the labor to help them thrive in the competitive markets that have little or no interference form the government. The businesses rely on the capitalistic market to make as much profit as they can. Therefore, because the government does not interfere with businesses in this kind of setting, the businesses are allowed to do anything possible to make profits. This means that they can increase the prices of commodities at will or add hidden prices as they lure the customers to buy their products. Consumers have no say in this kind of system and end up on finding tactics of survival.
Karl Max and Max Weber are philosophers that criticized the system of capitalism a lot. In their threads of thought, they viewed capitalism as a system that subordinated the individual needs and desires so as to achieve the goal, which is accumulating as much money as possible (Marx & Engels, 28). This is the reason for social classes in the society; the bourgeoisie and the working class. The working class provides labor while the upper classes increase their wealth through their work, only to get paid very little. Marx clarifies that in a capitalistic society, the requirements of people are characterized by how private proprietorship functions. The human needs do not involve essential needs additionally incorporates the inexorably refined needs as riches continues developing. Workers were considered as slaves in light of the fact that the framework constrained them to conform their necessities downwards through installments or compensations (Marx & Engels, 20).
Evidently, capitalism does more harm than good to the consumers. In my case, I had no choice but to accept the escalating price of this commodity and either buy it or not. It is sad to see that as a society, we live to survive through such injustices. Businesses want to make money and therefore, exploit the labor and the accessibility to the free market to make as much profit as they can at the expense of the consumers. Consumers usually have very little say in such matters especially in cases of monopolies. Even though the government sometimes makes laws to protect the consumers, somehow businesses manage to find loopholes and make profit in huge margins. It is all about the capitalist system that operates in a market economy where the prices of products and services solely depend on the buyers and sellers of the goods. Therefore, in a capitalistic system people are free to buy and sell products and make profit by whatever means they can.
Marx, Karl, and Friedrich Engels. Manifesto of the Communist Party and Selected Essays. Arc Manor LLC, 2008.
Weber, Max. From Max Weber: essays in sociology. Routledge, 2009.
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