Some columnists are asking if the current crisis will lead to "the end of American Capitalism."
To the contrary, now that the madness of Republican and Libertarian ideologues is being buried in the ash heap of the global economy, maybe true "American Capitalism" can get back to work.
"American Capitalism" is not a hands-off, completely laissez-faire economic and government relationship that the Libertarians have managed to sell to many people since the Reagan era. The idea that an entirely unregulated marketplace was the world's most advanced and healthiest system has been known to be a failure since the 1880s, for crying out loud. The U.S. led in developing "American Capitalism" in the early 20th Century in a system that imposed regulations all over the place, including many that the Republican ideologues under Reagan swiftly sought to dismantle.
So let's get this straight RIGHT NOW: "American Capitalism" is traditionally a system in which government regulation and intervention IS an essential component, and in which public policy interacts with the market to both protect the interests of investors and to protect the interests of the nation as a whole.
That, which some ideologically-driven fools in the Republican and Libertarian circles seem to say is "socialism," is what has historically been the model for "American Capitalism." The economic polices of Reagan-Bush I-Bush II have been throwbacks to the uninformed, incompetent and aggressively aristocratic systems of Great Britain in the mid-1700's when Edmund Burke voiced his "liberal" theories. And oh yeah, "Liberalism" was actually describing in those times what we call "conservatism" today.
The global market crises are a direct consequence of the utterly insane and inept policies of Bush II, beginning in 2002. At that time, the Dumbo from Crawford launched a program of aggressive promotion of debt to put money into the economy. Mortgage the house, he told America, buy stocks! Everything's just fine, go out and BUY that new car, new refrigerator, or mega-buck fancy TV set. And the Bush Regime followed suit with interest rate cuts repeatedly, intentional avoidance of regulatory oversight, and any other measure. When in early 2006 the country was so debt-ridden the economy could no longer be fueled by mad consumer spending and new home buying, the crash really started.
The Bush Debt Economy is the cause of this crash. The utterly idiotic idea that "American Capitalism" is defined by Reaganomics and the ideologues of mindless deregulation unfortunately underlies the Bush Regime's horrendous policies. But "American Capitalism" for a century preceding that time was anything BUT the stupid, inept, and nearly-criminal policies of Republicans and Libertatians.