Explaining the virtue of free-market capitalism in one sentence

I’m big on reducing complex ideas into a single sentence. I know that should not be possible without leaving out so much that it will just be incomprehensible.  But sometimes it can be done and when it can it makes a complex idea easier to understand.  In the post below I showed how Mark Perry reduced the complexity of the argument against raising the minimum wage to a simple statement comparing it to a sin tax.  Dr. Barbara Bellar brilliantly explained Obamacare in one sentence.  I’ve taken a stab at doing this myself with The Syrian issue in one sentence [actually a couple of sentences] and The Difference Between Keynesianism and Supply Side Economics in One Sentence, [actually two sentences, one each for Keynesianism and Supply Side Economics].

So now I’m going to try to explain the virtues of free-market capitalism in one sentence that tries to encapsulate the ideas expressed and defended in book-long explications of capitalism, such as  Defending the Free Market and the Moral Case for a Free Economy and A Capitalist Manifesto: Understanding the Free Market and Defending Liberty. These are both excellent books that I highly recommend, by the way.

The virtue of free-market capitalism in one sentence:

Free-market capitalism is the best economic system because unlike socialism and all of its cousins it does not depend upon men becoming angels; rather it takes humanity and its flaws as they exist and turns human greed and selfishness into a force for good that motivates all who accept its challenge to work for the betterment of others as a means to better themselves.

Adam Smith understood this perfectly when he wrote, “It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer, or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard to their own interest.”

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