好的资本主义,坏的资本主义

发自巴黎——市场交易的基本形式——即商人和消费者的直接交易行为——在大约3000~4000年前逐渐形成。在这种崭新的社会关系当中,买什么,何时买和从谁处买都任由消费者自由选择,还常常能跟卖家讨价还价一番。

而正是这些特性使得自由市场原则成为一种最基本自由的组成部分并深深植根于我们的日常生活中。时至今日,尽管有许多人努力去寻找另一种模式,甚至尝试运用极权主义来取代这一原则,但最后都以失败告终,自由市场依然占据着支配地位。事实上,东欧的前社会主义国家重新参与到全球市场交换活动已经有20年的光阴,而全球的社会民主者们则早在1946年就已经开始类似行动了。

几千年来,自由市场就是由若干独立个体组成:手工业者,商人,消费者。三百年前兴起的资本主义也不过是在此基础之上但规模更大的活动。由于蒸汽机和电的应用,大规模的集体工作成为可能,而企业则能够吸引产生大量手中小有积蓄的人,也就是后来的资本家们。

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