What is Capitalism?, This essay defines capitalism by using examples written in essay form.

Essay by bigstevehhs60University, Bachelor'sA, March 2005

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Capitalism is a term that originated with the help of a number of historical cultures, which had a number of different world views. The term capitalism when used to describe European practices means more than just a group of social practices applied across historical and geographical distances. Capitalism is also a way of thinking. Originating in Rome, the Middle East, and the Middle Ages, mercantilism is the earliest form of capitalism. Mercantilism involves the distribution of products in order to obtain a profit. Products are bought for a certain price somewhere and are then sold at a higher price somewhere else. Over time in Europe, mercantilism evolved into capitalism. As with mercantilism, capitalism is the large-scale realization of achieving a profit by selling goods for more than they were paid for originally. Distribution of wealth, freedom, free-competition and a limited government are some main characteristics of a capitalistic economy.

One aspect of capitalism is the distribution of wealth.

With the distribution of wealth, capitalism distributes wealth fairly to those who earned it based on how much they produced. Under capitalism, wealth is not a collective resource to be distributed by some totalitarian or his buddies, but is produced by individuals. Wealth belongs to the individual who produced it. Basically, wealth is the product of man's mind and belongs to each man to the extent that he created it. In a joint venture how does someone determine what share of the wealth each person would get? Under Capitalism, if more than one individual took part in that production, each deserves his share according to how much of it they produced as mutually agreed upon amongst themselves by their own free-will. The general principle in such cases would be that those who produce less receive less and those who produced more,