• Freedom
  • Innovation
  • Growth

Global Capitalists Meet in Davos to Extol Global Socialism

It’s not just the Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez-infatuated millennials who are warming up to the tenets of socialism, some major economic voices are also expressing some sympathy.
The annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, is underway and celebrating its 50th anniversary.
The meeting has become a veritable who’s who of the rich and famous, both in and out of government, from around the world. They come to see and be seen—and be heard.
President Trump is there for the second time, highlighting the strong U.S. economy. His message will likely fall on many deaf ears, because the meeting has morphed from a discussion of the challenges facing economies to a gripe session, where leftists scold the wealthy countries—and especially the United States under President Trump—for not doing enough to impose a leftist agenda of high taxes, income redistribution to developing countries, environmental crackdowns and more big-government control.
As president, Barack Obama was all over that agenda; Donald Trump not so much.
And even though Bloomberg News describes Davos as “global capitalism’s foremost gathering,” many attendees are expressing support for transitioning to more government control.
Bloomberg News quotes Adair Turner, former head of the U.K.’s bank regulator and a Davos regular, as saying “We’re past peak laissez-faire in many ways.”
Turner continued, “We passed it in the financial system 10 years ago, when we nearly blew up the world economy. It’s taken longer in other areas. But people are realizing there’s a need for strategic direction in areas like climate change.”
It’s not entirely clear what “peak laissez-faire means,” but it sounds like Turner thinks capitalism in on the decline because free markets aren’t responsive enough to today’s “woke” world.
And he’s probably correct in one sense: Markets respond to what consumers want, not what the left deems important—which is why the left hates markets.
Of course, there is zero connection between the Great Recession that began in 2007 and climate change. Indeed, in the U.S. that recession was largely the result of the government providing “strategic direction,” to use Turner’s term, in an effort to push lower-income families into houses they could not afford.  And then bundling those subprime loans and pawning them off as safe investments.
The good news is that President Trump, and therefore U.S. economic policies, will likely be unimpressed by Davos attendees’ views. 
Even so, some countries will surely embrace the peak laissez-faire philosophy. And it won’t be hard to figure out which ones. They will be the countries with the stagnant or contracting economies.