Book Cover

Capitalism,  The Way to a World of Peace and Plenty

J.S. Mill’s Democratic Capitalism Manifesto 11/29/2017

At the time of Mill, Marx and Engels educational material on the superior economic system was available. It was not used for the reasons described in this CCDC article.The result is a feeling in society that the economic standard and the quality of life should be better. They are right.

When most academician find that the title of the book that I wrote is Democratic Capitalism, the Way to a World of Peace and Plenty their frequent response was "Isn't that an oxymoron?" If I find one who will listen I explain that is is not an oxymoron and that the question indicates to me that the person who asked it is defaulting on their responsibility to add knowledge of a superior economic system for broader application.

Ray Carey 

J.S. Mill’s Democratic Capitalism Manifesto

In mid 19th century John Stuart Mill, Karl Marx, and Friedrich Engels studied Robert Owen’s demonstration of substantially greater profits from investing in his workers, “vital machines” as he called them. The culture in his spinning mill was trust and cooperation which Owen cultivated through company sponsored education of students as young as three.
Marx described the productive results from changing the culture from alienation to cooperation and even saw an end to war as nations switched to democratic capitalist trade. Engels described workers freed to reach their potential. Mill’s book had a whole chapter on worker ownership systems. 

Mill’s manifesto combined greater wealth production with worker satisfaction: 

The other mode in which cooperation tends to increase the 
productiveness of labor, consists in the vast stimulus given 
to productive energies, by placing the laborers in a relation 
to their work to make it their principle interest—at present 
it is not—to do the utmost, in exchange for their 
remuneration. It is scarcely possible to rate too highly this 
material benefit, which yet is nothing compared to the moral 
revolution in society that would accompany it; a new sense of 
security and independence; and the conversion of human’s daily 
occupation into a school of the social sympathies and the 
practical intelligence.

If democratic capitalism is superior in both profits and worker satisfaction why is it not the universal system? The answer is that instead of studying Owen’s positive experience of investing in the workers most academician inherited from Plato and Aristotle a critical view of capitalism and commerce. They viewed the State as the agent for social progress while Greece was over one-half slave, absorbed by repetitive wars, and without public education. Aristotle wrote: “a man who lives the life of a mechanic or laborer cannot pursue the things which belong to excellence.” Plato wrote: “It is important for the state first to keep its trading class as small as possible; second, trade should be made over to a class of people whose corruption will not harm the state unduly.” 

The self-development of workers was inconsistent with this Greek tradition, but an awareness of this contradiction did not penetrate the cultural conditioning of most academicians, then or now. This view had a long life because it seemed to confirm for each generation of academicians that they were superior beings. The road to peace and plenty will not be found until the academic community studies economic alternatives and finds the system that maximizes wealth by providing humans the opportunity to reach potential. 

Ray CareyRay Carey

Ray Carey learned through managing companies for 33 years how to change the work culture to provide employees with their best opportunities to develop and contribute. This experience began as a 28 year old plant manager and later president of an electric motor company, and concluded with eighteen years as president , chairman, and CEO of ADT, Inc.

See Carey's autobiography of his work career in chapter two of his first book,

Democratic Capitalism, The Way to a World of Peace and Plenty.

For more information about Ray Carey and his advocacy of democratic capitalism, visit the pages of this website.