In this new condensed version of his masterpiece, Capitalism , Arthur Seldon explains why, despite its apparent imperfections, the market system is infinitely preferable to the alternatives. The market system has, since the eighteenth century, brought enormous gains in living standards, in contradiction to the Marxist theories that predicted capitalism’s collapse.
The institution of property rights has facilitated trade and investment, whilst the price mechanism has enabled people to benefit from dispersed knowledge about individual preferences. Yet politicians, needing to win votes in the short-term, have largely failed to recognise the benefits of a market system with the minimum of government intervention. The development of the welfare state has been disastrous, almost destroying the voluntary provision of health and education, whilst creating institutions that serve producer interests at the expense of consumers. Seldon’s messa