by: Lioni Beatrik
“if capitalism were a handsome man between the ages of 29 and 35, i would marry him on the first date.”
we've talked about capitalism so many times before. we've talked about how capitalism has ruined this world. capitalism has created poverty, violence, and war. we always blame capitalism as being behind all this. is it true?
i love capitalism. i cannot imagine how i would live without it.
see, without capitalism, we cannot see skinny, sexy, white-skinned woman walk as a cat on the world stage of fashion. without capitalism, we won’t be able to see great skyscraper buildings with high-end technology and modern architectural styles. without capitalism, we don’t have a boss. without capitalism, maybe there won’t be any cell phones and you cannot buy good clothes. without capitalism, you cannot enjoy Hollywood movies with beautiful actresses and, of course, good-looking actors. without capitalism, there won’t be any supermarkets or big malls.
you see, now, how capitalist products are the best in the world? they will give you the ultimate satisfaction. products are guaranteed 100% made with the most excellent materials. when you want fur coats, they will kill a big bear only for you. what you need to know, though: is your money enough to buy a bear? today, many people spend their money on the lives of bears, whales and, of course, elephants. what can man not buy today as long as he has cash? now, you can even buy an island. right?
well, i realize with capitalism, i have to use second hand clothes. i don’t know if the clothes are hygienic enough for me or not. because of capitalism, i have to pay much more for medical insurance. because of capitalism, there is much starvation in the world. with capitalism, the poor become poorer and the rich become richer. envy leading to violence happens in the whole part of this chaotic world because one giant evil: CAPITALISM.
but you know why i still love capitalism? capitalism made rich people give aid/help/money/food to poor people. and you know what, the rich people will think that they’ve become a good and honorable person because they did their part to help the oppressed people. they will think “wow! i’ve done what Gandhi said, that happiness depends on what you can give, not what you can get. i’ve already given to other people; i’m the happiest person in the whole world! Gandhi would have been proud of me!” you see now, with capitalism, we worship Gandhi even more…stupid.
with capitalism you know that knowledge is pain and ignorance is bliss. as humans evolved, what happened to knowledge? don’t you realize what people are fighting about until now is knowledge? and yet somehow knowledge made life become easier.
but yes, knowledge hurts. when people know, they become smart. when knowledge is implemented as a good thing, the results will be good too. what if people use knowledge to take over other people? that’s what happens today. capitalism made knowledge an exclusive and expensive thing. only high-class people have a good chance to get good knowledge; and what happens to the lower classes? well, for lower class people, they will think what you don’t know won’t hurt you. see. as i said before, ignorance is bliss.
that’s why, with capitalism, people are controlled to love money even more; to worship money as their god. and the lower class only thinks that their poverty is a destiny that comes from God. you know the church has also become capitalist nowadays. they sell bibles to buy airplanes and boats with the reason: “Well, the Good News from God must be delivered to every person in every part of the world." silly, isn’t it? and people will believe these Christians because they don’t have enough knowledge. i love capitalism even more because i can see how it makes people so greedy and arrogant.
let’s try to walk in their shoes for a mile. wow! that must be fun! to have luxury cars, an airplane, a grand house with a golf course and a big swimming pool, hundreds of servants to serve, and of course you can go around the world as you like. you can stay in a nice and expensive hotel. you can buy new clothes that are exhibited on catwalks in Paris, Rio, Milan, London, Tokyo, and New York. you can be as easy as you want to be!
how does it feel? good? no. better than good. as Marry Poppins said, it feels “Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious!” or French people will say “Superb..!”
And yet, no way, you don’t want to walk in their shoes for a mile. you want to walk in their shoes forever. right? of course I’m right. that’s why i love capitalism.
as a capitalist, would you care about war? about conflict? violence? NO! the point of capitalism is to get as much as you want in any way. if you have to kill to get more money and make people suffer, then do it. we get more money by making war. why not? other people will suffer, but not me. i’m still the king of the world, top of the list, number one!
so what’s wrong if i make war? oh, but people are becoming aware about war, because sometimes wars happen for stupid reasons. there’s something wrong with the structure, the economic and education systems all over the world.
i remember one of the greatest Indonesian poets, Widji Thukul, who was kidnapped by the military in 1998; he said:
When people leave while the authority gives speeches.
Beware! Maybe people feel hopeless.
When people hide and speak softly when they talk about their problems,
the authority must be aware and learn to listen carefully.
When people become afraid to protest, that means we all are in grave danger.
When people cannot criticize the authority, truth is threatened.
If an idea is rejected without consideration, the voice becomes voiceless.
When people are accused of being subversives and disturbing security for criticizing authority.
Then, there’s only one word: FIGHT!
yes, people fight. but then again, they lost the war.
but the battle is still continuing until today. people struggle in their own way. and that makes life worth living. if there’s no struggle, life would be so meaningless, so valueless.
we can make changes.
another world is possible, right?
Lioni Beatrik, from Indonesia, is a graduate student of Responsible Management and Sustainable Economic Development at the UN-mandated University for Peace of Costa Rica.