Capitalism; A Long, Narrow Road To Freedom
It's true! Adhering to a capitalist system gives you freedom to an extent, but where does the line stop? Does it stop? It's a blurry line at best. Blurred by those, as most people already know, with the power to reach out to the population of the world on a mass scale. Let me give you an example; television licensing. Everyone who wishes to watch live television must own a television license. Okay, I don't watch television, but I still get constant reminders to alert the system for licensing that I don't. But say I do, and I pay the tax...Where does this go? Apparently it goes towards governmental schemes such as the right to non-commerical broadcasting. Okay, so I've paid the tax to view my television...What do I get from this? You get to watch television, without the right to choose how things are broadcasted of course. But, again, it's not fair to choose what is broadcasted to millions of people, is it? This is where the capitalist lines blur; moral obligations are anything but precise in a world which the few who are powerful rule.
Taking this example further; say I wish to choose what is broadcasted, so I decide to make my own television programme which takes up a slot on a channel. It would take decades of my life to make such a show appealing to a mass audience, as I don't have the sufficient funding to do such a task. Instantaneous gratification is a thing of the past; where we used to come together to promote our ideals in such a way, that they would be accepted as having an impact on our lives for performing the objective we set out to do...We are no longer able to do this on such a scale where we can accept that we have made a significant change to our lives. It only takes a lifetime to create such an impact now; going through the educational system and deciding at way-points whether you want to pursue an educational goal, a practical one or live a solitary life, and even then, through the solitary path of confinement the impact which you set out to achieve is personal, not external. So how is freedom meant to be understood from living in this structured society? Limited, but emancipating to an extent? This is where educational circumstances takes its toll; not everyone is educated the same way, i.e. not everyone in such a society benefits from an education. Some fail very early on, some go on to pursue and improve their educational life.
Education; A Right Or A Privilege?
Now, this is the part where many people may disagree with me on and probably the part which is going to be biased, but it must be in order to understand how these perspectives are formed. Coming from a working class background I've followed the idealistic renaissance perspective where I have attempted to work my way out of the lower classes into a middle ground, so to speak anyway. My parents don't have the power to manipulate the system, so I've had to use what I can to further myself to accomplish my goals. This hasn't been easy in any respect as I've had to take hours of my life into travelling to and from college and school in order to achieve what I originally couldn't where I live, due to the population being working class, and their offspring following suit into the system. This is where modern capitalism fails to accept the lower class; the backgrounds which they come from manipulate their way of viewing the world, and as such their strive to achieve what they originally wanted from life. Instead, they view the instantaneous gratification of living a quiet life in the working class as such gratification is hard to come by unless you're blessed by the system of being born into the upper end of the spectrum of classes.
Again, we are free to choose whether we wish to stay in the lower end of the hierarchy of classes, but our surroundings and society in which we are born into provokes and promotes a pacifist nature. This is also why people refuse to talk about such a subject; seen but not heard is a statement which best defines the failure to invoke a strive in today's generation of youth.Of course, it's in Human nature to strive to be accepted, and a pacifist outlook on such a system promotes a certain acceptingness to the lower class, however at the same time it promotes the ideal of a modern capitalist society to stay the way it is. But, I digress; class systems are what form capitalism. Without class, there wouldn't be a way to put currency into perspective, and as such the lower classes would be without an incentive to do their jobs to please the upper classes.
Freedom; Strictly An Ideological Concept Or A Very Real Force?
In whatever perspective you take on the idea of freedom, it is both a force and a concept; blurred lines, as I previously stated and this modern structural society dictates how free someone can be. In relevance to modern capitalism, it provokes the question of if you are free to abstain from such a system, you lose out on purchasing and the currency system, so how do you live freely this way? Marx promoted the idea that capitalism relies on the class system in order for production to work for the rich, but not for the poor.
EDIT: I somehow feel this is incomplete. I will most probably return in the near future to expand on capitalism and the emancipation of society...I feel as if I didn't expand on my points properly enough to have the desired effect I hoped for...