Read the first paragraph below, or click here to read the entire essay: Shannon DeHoff – The Capitalist Kitchen: Chemicals, Food Safety, and Public Awareness
Capitalism is a system based on individual rights with the principles of laissez faire and the free market. In a capitalist economy, one has the individual right to succeed or fail. One is supposed to have the right to rise from poverty to riches, if they possess the skills and willpower to do so. While Ayn Rand’s notion of capitalism persuades one to believe it is a system of justice, corporate greed and political persuasion have taken a functional system and corrupted it. The system is rampant with insatiable hunger for more wealth, and the principles of capitalism allow for those with the most wealth to exponentially increase their wealth, even though it means taking from those who already have little or none to give. The system is not concerned with ethics or morality, rather how much profit they can make and how fast. Although this is a concern in all areas of the economy, this entirely and specifically applies to the agricultural industry. We cannot live without nutrition; we are all consumers and victims of agribusiness. The system has allowed for consumers to have their rights stripped and information withheld. Corporations and agribusiness take precedent over the basic rights of the human. Capitalism is no longer a system of justice and freedom, rather a system of exploitation and deception. This applies specifically in agribusiness by means of nutritional support of the poor, genetically modified crops and the labeling debate, industrial farming and the meat industry. By drawing on research in these areas, I will argue that capitalism and its policies have led America off the right path and down a track of corruption and immorality.