Business & Economy

Free Markets Do Foster the Decline of Virtue

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Paul Williams

In this article, Paul Williams argues that capitalism’s elevation of individual choice as the supreme good undermines the ability for other virtues to appear in society. This idolization of individual choice is counter to a Christian view of individual freedom. In making this argument, Williams distinguishes between capitalism—an ideology with a specific moral vision—and markets—an economic system. What he implies by this distinction is that it is still possible to support a market economy as a Christian without adhering to all of the moral implications associated with capitalism today.  He affirms the role of markets as a more conducive means to fostering virtue than other systems, such as feudalism or socialism, while still questioning the extent to which we allow markets to pervade various aspects of human life. He concludes by stressing that if we want to have smaller government and decentralized power, we must limit the scope of markets within our lives and give space for other goals aside from individual choice.

Source: ChristianWeek

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