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Bono: Only Capitalism Can End Poverty [Video]

Bono

You probably figure that like most prominent artists and entertainment celebrities, U2 frontman Bono would be a typical left-liberal.

But you’d be wrong.

The Values & Capitalism blog of the American Enterprise Institute observes that “For a rock star whose travels to developing nations and advocacy of foreign aid are well known, this focus on commerce has surprised many observers—and apparently the man himself.”

In a recent speech at Georgetown University’s Global Social Enterprise Event, Bono admitted that even he himself finds it hard to accept that he has become a rock star who preaches capitalism. “Wow; sometimes I hear myself and I just can’t believe it,” he said.

Bono is well known for leading charitable organizations and initiatives that are fighting poverty and disease in Africa. He also may or may not be the world’s wealthiest musician as a result of his investment in the Facebook IPO.

At the Georgetown speech, Bono made the following statements:

“Aid is just a stop-gap. Commerce [and] entrepreneurial capitalism takes more people out of poverty than aid.

“In dealing with poverty here and around the world, welfare and foreign aid are a Band-Aid. Free enterprise is a cure.

“Entrepreneurship is the most sure way of development.”

In a speech in Dublin in October, Bono express similar sentiments according to Forbes.

“Job creators and innovators are just the key, and aid is just a bridge… We see it as startup money, investment in new countries. A humbling thing was to learn the role of commerce.”

The clip below contains a portion of Bono’s Georgetown University remarks:

[top image credit: 360b/Shutterstock.com]

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Comments

121 Responses to “Bono: Only Capitalism Can End Poverty [Video]”

  1. Tooxforu Xtremex

    BONO – MESSAGE ME – I live on the street and I have a business that will employ poor people if I can find an investor to make it grow.

  2. Ari Himber

    Bono's investment in poor countries like Facebook has employed tons of people.

  3. Tooxforu Xtremex

    I've been trying to get this going for three years and this year I decided to try anything to get an investor because I've been unemployed for five years and haven't been able to make the business profitable on these meager funds.

  4. Carol Melcher

    Bono's another liberal socialist idiot so I can't even believe he said anything good about Capitalism…Oh ya wait, he DOES rake in the doe from his concerts and from his buy RED for Africa goods.

  5. William McElhannon

    I'm skeptical. Look at how he treated George W. Bush when Bush invited him to the white house to honor his work to help aids victims. He later bragged to then Senator Obama how he snubbed Bush. I lost a lot of respect for Bono.

  6. Giovanni Campanella

    Carol Melcher: Be nice please, it takes integrity to admit when you are wrong. A lot of us libertarians are reformed liberals too.

  7. Giovanni Campanella

    Tooxforu Xtremex: Keep looking for more resources dude, we need people like you.

  8. Giovanni Campanella

    He changed his mind about economics, but that doesn't mean he is a conservative. Bush isn't a capitalist just b/c he has an 'R' after his name, if that's what you were implying.

  9. Bob Areddy

    Tooxforu Xtremex Time to get a real job, save some capital, and become your own investor.

  10. Bob Areddy

    Some people take different roads and different timelines to finally understand that freedom is the solution.

  11. Sally Oh

    Can't wait till he figures out that the governments and organizations he's so fond of actually CREATE the poverty.

  12. Paul Massé

    wait what? Capitalism system and globalization is the source of injustice on earth. How can it be possible when half of the population split their head in two to meet de needs of North American countries. Go tell it to kids in Africa who are depending on our corn reserves to survive. Go tell them that it's not our fault. I would be shocked to hear that if I was one of those. Capitalism is the best friend of Satan after Lady Gaga, Jeezy , Kany West , Madona , Beyoncé and all those fake ass artist.

  13. Ted Seay

    And how do you eat compassion? Give a man a fish, and he'll ask for tartar sauce…

  14. Evonda Valentine

    Economy is not driven by compassion, it is driven by necessity. Compassion is a good thing but it doesn't build factories and create jobs. Need and greed do those things. I would say interference in the economy has caused more poverty than lack of compassion ever has. Nothing on this earth just falls into people's laps. It has to be harvested or transformed into something we can use. It doesn't matter how much compassion I have for others if I have nothing else to give them. That something else is the result of having my needs met and then some.

  15. Yvonne Williams

    Wow, yeah, imagine where we would be without the capitalist control of corporations like Monsanto, Dow, and other chemical companies poisoning our food, farm workers, livestock, ecosystem…imagine what it would be like without China importing lead-laden crayons, toxic food, and other tainted products, taking away jobs and income from our home country. Lets just fight over the control over Africa now in the name of good will.

  16. Simon Dilling Christiansen

    So Bono, wrapped up in his desire to be an inttelctual boheme type of guy with fancy at on the wall and expensive wine in a glass, finally sold his soul…. He must be helped in the proces of eye opening…. Help that man to see….

  17. Linda Kay Yeargan

    He's what a Capitalist,don't make me laugh~I remember when he refused to play for Pez Bush..Nay Bono is Saving is ass He Just doesn't want t give up any share of His cash..Selfish maybe..Capitalist NO and No Again..only an Idiot would believe Bono swings for the Conservative efforts in any capacity..hah ha ha Bono a spokesperson for Capitalism..he just doesn't want Liberalism to wipe out His Cashflow..ride that pig Bono baby Ride it on down..hahahahaha

  18. Chris Homsey

    Well, its created a lot of opportunities for new entrepreneurial ventures. Sure, facebook has made a lot of money, but think about all of the exposure and wealth it has helped generate for many other companies and entrepreneurs, start-ups included.

  19. Eli King

    Capitalism depends on the fact that the poor will fuel the money train by working for low wages and back breaking hours.

  20. Mads Robert Kjøller Kivikoski

    Why – when he's got it right on spot?

  21. Sally Moro

    they don't have to. Only socialist countries force people to work as wage slaves. Free countries give people the freedom to choose or make their own business.

  22. Sean Cain

    Capitalism is responsible for global poverty and rapidly increasing inequality, as it is the premier ideology which governs the world economy today.

    Capitalism got us into this mess, and it's going to take a very different system – one that is far more just, egalitarian and democratic – to get us out of it.

    The solution to the failures of capitalism IS NOT more capitalism.

  23. Sean Cain

    Sally Moro Socialist countries like Sweden, Norway and Denmark don't "force" anyone to work. The idea that workers and the poor are "free" in capitalism to "make their own businesses" and become millionaires is a fantasy – and a laughable excuse to blame the poverty stricken billions on our earth for their own suffering…

  24. Sean Cain

    So Evonda, are you arguing that there isn't enough wealth in our world to provide housing, food, health care and education to everyone on the planet?

    Statistics from the World Bank and the UNDP would fundamentally disagree with you…

  25. Sean Cain

    So Evonda, are you arguing that there isn't enough wealth in our world to provide housing, food, health care and education to everyone on the planet?

    Statistics from the World Bank and the UNDP would fundamentally disagree with you…

  26. Sean Cain

    You mean, CAPITALIST governments and organizations owned and controlled by corporations and banks?

    Quite right, Sally.

  27. Sean Cain

    You mean, CAPITALIST governments and organizations owned and controlled by corporations and banks?

    Quite right, Sally.

  28. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain If you just give aid it causes a dependency culture where people don't even bother to farm their land or sell their crops. this has happened for generations in parts of Africa where people have for years waited for aid to arrive. Are you saying Sean that people should live like this so that everything is shared out exactly equally?

  29. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain If you just give aid it causes a dependency culture where people don't even bother to farm their land or sell their crops. this has happened for generations in parts of Africa where people have for years waited for aid to arrive. Are you saying Sean that people should live like this so that everything is shared out exactly equally?

  30. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain Scandinavian countries are all well and truly capitalist. that is how they can afford generous welfare systems.

  31. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain If you want to see socialist societies look at Ethiopia during the time of live aid where the president mengistu was ordering thousands of crates of whiskey to celebrate the birth of Stalin and had collectivised all the land. Same in Somalia, same in Egypt. these are socialism at their finest. Collectivised industry with subsidised bread that people have to queue for same as in your beloved USSR.

  32. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain If you want to see socialist societies look at Ethiopia during the time of live aid where the president mengistu was ordering thousands of crates of whiskey to celebrate the birth of Stalin and had collectivised all the land. Same in Somalia, same in Egypt. these are socialism at their finest. Collectivised industry with subsidised bread that people have to queue for same as in your beloved USSR.

  33. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain they pay taxes that fund people like you who probably have nothing better to do than sit on their ass all day and argue on the internet about the evils of the people who provide for you.

  34. Sally Moro

    Sean Cain they pay taxes that fund people like you who probably have nothing better to do than sit on their ass all day and argue on the internet about the evils of the people who provide for you.

  35. Jeff Smith

    @Sean Cain: You are truly one of the most ignorant, uninformed people I've encountered on FB. Capitalism is the ONLY economic system that works the best for most of the people most of the time. Sure, it isn't perfect; but, in reality, there is no perfect economic system and there never will be. Maybe you prefer to barely scrape by under a communist economic system. Wouldn't that just be lovely?

  36. Sean Cain

    Well, actually Sally, many corporations DON'T pay taxes, since they hide their money in offshore bank accounts.

    Of course, I'm sure you TOTALLY knew that already.

  37. Sean Cain

    The money that western governments give to poor people in developing countries is absolutely NOTHING compared to what poor people in those countries and their governments give to our banks in interest payments. Those interest payments is FAR higher than any "foreign aid" we have "given" them, most of which is corporate welfare to western businesses.

    The idea that poor people in the developing world are poor because of "dependency" is utterly ridiculous, and wouldn't even be worthy of a Fox News hack.

  38. Sean Cain

    What you are describing in the Soviet Unions, Sally, is a communist dictatorship, not socialist democracy.

    Funny how you call Scandinavian countries "capitalist." Their rich pay the highest taxes in the world (much higher than the wealthy in the United States), there is massive government spending on welfare, housing, education and universal, socialized health care insurance system (all of which reach over 50% of GDP), many industries (like Swedish banking or Norwegian oil) is wholly or mostly under government ownership, and over 65% of workers belong to labor unions (unlike 12% in the US).

    Gee, President Obama wanted to raise taxes on the rich by 3% and people called him a "Marxist." I'd hate to think of what right-wing, Tea Party crackpot would think of Denmark.

  39. Sean Cain

    Sorry, Jeff. I think the 900 million people who are suffering from malnutrition and starvation in the world would probably disagree with you about capitalism, as would the 1.2 billion without clean drinking water and the 800 million unemployed and underemployed.

    Capitalism isn't "in crisis." Capitalism IS the crisis.

    We also don't want totalitarian communism. We need a democratic and socialist economic system controlled by workers, not by state bureaucrats or corporations and banks.

    Corporate capitalism and Communism aren't extremes. They're WAY too much alike for that.

  40. George Blackmore

    Hate these guy's who decide to read a new book, and they have these overnight philosophical conversions to the subject text, then what'dya know, the planet is blessed with another 'Sudden Expert!' This guy will now be everywhere with his latest line of, "look what I heard" blather, and he won't shut-up until he finds the next book..
    *
    Please go away, your story has become tiresome & boring, stay home and save the Irish poor your words are unneeded here, we are the 'Capitalism People' here in the U.S. so you cannot convince us of anything.

  41. George Blackmore

    You may want to look the word 'ABUNDANCE' up in the dictionary, then look around the only things in abundance on this planet today are human beings, salt water, and hip hop artists, Mr Hendrawantovanderuilskuiken.

  42. Robert Harden

    Sean Cain "CAPITALIST governments and organizations owned and controlled by corporations and banks?"
    If they are owned by corporations and banks, They are not capitalist. They are corporatist, please learn the difference.

  43. César Julián Aguirre-Gutierrez

    Sally Moro If they paid their fair share, maybe Sean, you and the rest of us could have affordable universal healthcare, free education or a plethora of other social benefits made nonexistent by the financial vacuum corporations create.

  44. Simon Dilling Christiansen

    Mads Robert Kjøller Kivikoski Because he's incorrect. History down the line proves him wrong. Even the history of today proves him wrong. Capitalism and corporations maintain the status quo of poverty and the other destructive consequences that comes with it(killings in the streets etc.).

  45. David Moon

    I have to agree with Bono, at least for developing countries. The best chance they have is in private entrepreneurs who can start very small businesses using micro-loans. You have to understand that with the level of corruption in places like Africa, India, etc., governments are not capable of managing socialism, or anything other than a capitalist society. Governments are part of the problem there, and it's the people themselves that are going to have to build up their local societies. Now, for our developed countries, we have a much different problem. Capitalism needs some major overhauls in the Western world.

  46. Anonymous

    There are few articles out there which discuss how continued aid to places like Africa is killing the economic ability of people in that part of the world from lifting itself up. The main issue is how foreign aid is often given over to governments who themselves are corrupt. Large portion of aid money is looted to private accounts and goods are siphoned off to be sold onto the marketplace which in turn ends up competing with locales in native fledgling industries (such as the clothing industry) making it impossible for these industries in these nations to compete with aid goods being sold at below cost. Most of these articles themselves have been written by native born African economists who have first hand knowledge and understanding of the harmful effects of what occurs when other nations or organizations just give out money or goods to African nations. In the end it is as Bono finally has finally realized, a band aid approach that does not create long term sustainable economic improvements, and growth. Of which is only seen when capitalism is allowed to take root and grow in these nations without the undermining interference of their respective governments so as to fulfil the needs of its populace by creating incentives for production and economic growth and establishing internal and external markets for goods and services in these nations. Best example of the effects of liberalization of a economy in a nation is China. Compared to the Maoist government's centrally planned economy of China of post 1970, today's China is beacon of economic and social growth and freedom which would of not of been seen had China not listened to the likes of men such as Milton Friedman who gave many lectures in China which influence and opened the eyes of their leadership cast of communist elites that they needed to change in order to survive. If China had stayed on course with its centrally planned economy it would be only slightly better off than North Korea is today.

  47. Anonymous

    "Africa who are depending on our corn reserves to survive."

    That is the problem that guys like Bono have FINALLY understood. Africa is dependent on the West and that is inherently wrong both morally and ethically considering Africa's vast resources. If capitalism were to be allowed to flourish without the hand of their corrupt governments interfering the peoples of African would create a economic powerhouse of a continent that would rival and compete with likes such as the US, the whole of Europe and Asia which includes Japan and China.

  48. Anonymous

    … Can you just please finish and release the next U2 album already?

  49. Shawn Meehan

    Great to have Bono see this since he is such a promoter of charity! Marxist Socialists are you listening?

  50. Sean Cain

    That's the thing, Robert. In the real world, there is no difference. Capitalism is dominated by corporations and banks, whether you like to believe it or not.

  51. Sean Cain

    That's the thing, Robert. In the real world, there is no difference. Capitalism is dominated by corporations and banks, whether you like to believe it or not.

  52. Anonymous

    Bono is a moron. Just read any of his NYT editorials. He is actually barely literate. I don't think he even graduated secondary school. And now he is a dupe of the 1%.

  53. Theo Theo

    Evonda Valentine capitalism not create profit,it grabs money from everywhere,it`s like you say that no matter how gangs make money,it`s important that they make money!

  54. Randy Yoder

    Actually, capitalism is dominated by consumers and producers engaged in free enterprise. Knock of the big bad corporate boogey-man BS. Yes there are some corporations that behave poorly, but most do not. I rather have misbehaving corps than misbehaving governments.

  55. Rob George

    The INQUISITIR, or perhaps more accurately, many of the commenters presenting contributing thereto, evidently cannot (yet) fully comprehend or appreciate the evolving understanding of the psycho-politico-socioeconomic systems currently hobbling Bucky’s and our Spaceship Earth. Paul David Hewson’s (aka) Bono’s struggle to understand and integrate that evolution is admirable, in my opinion. For what it’s worth, may I offer my “two cents worth”.

    Socioeconomic Democracy is a theoretically consistent and practically implementable socioeconomic system wherein there exist both some form and amount of locally appropriate Universally Guaranteed Personal Income and some form and amount of locally appropriate Maximum Allowable Personal Wealth, with both the lower bound on personal material poverty and the upper bound on personal material wealth set and adjusted democratically by all participants of a democratic society.

    Such a straightforward, globally desired democratic socioeconomic system is trivially realized with elementary Public Choice Theory.

    The intimately intertwined and interrelated serious societal problems Socioeconomic Democracy will eliminate or significantly reduce include (but are by no means limited to) those familiar ones associated with: Automation, Computerization and Robotization; Budget deficits and national debts; wasteful (opposed to desirable) Bureaucracy; maltreatment of Children; Crime and punishment; responsible Development considering ecology, environment, resources and pollution; Education, universal and without indoctrination; the Elderly; the Feminine majority; Inflation; International conflict; Intranational conflict; Involuntary employment; Involuntary unemployment; Labor strife and strikes; sick Medical and health care; Military metamorphosis benefiting all humanity; Natural disasters; Pay justice; Planned obsolescence; Political participation; Poverty; Racism; Sexism; Technologies yet untamed for human happiness; and the General Welfare.

    A few, of many, relevant links:

    Socioeconomic Democracy: An Advanced Socioeconomic System (Praeger Studies on the 21st Century, 2002).

    http://www.centersds.com/thebook.htm.

    “A Democratic Socioeconomic Platform, in Search of a Democratic Political Party”.

    http://www.centersds.com/dsep.html.

    “Socioeconomic Democracy: A Nonkilling, Life-Affirming and Enhancing Psycho-Politico-Socio-Economic System”.
    PelicanWeb’s Journal of Sustainable Development.

    http://www.pelicanweb.org/solisustv06n10page2robleygeorge.html.

    "Introducing a Socioeconomic Democracy".
    Prepared for Pakistan Futuristics Institute Silver Jubilee Publication: 4.
    Islamabad, Pakistan, 8 May 2011.
    This article includes an analysis of the many similarities and a few minor differences between Socioeconomic Democracy and Zakat, one of the Five Pillars of Islam.

    "Socioeconomic Democracy and Sustainable Development".

    http://rio20.net/en/documentos/socioeconomic-democracy-and-sustainable-development.

    "Socioeconomic Democracy"
    International Journal of Science, vol. 1, Feb., 2012 (pp.33-48).

    http://ijosc.net/index.html

    "Socioeconomic Democracy: a Progressive Societal Arrangement".
    Studies of Changing Societies: Comparative and Interdisciplinary Focus, vol.1, Jun., 2012.

    http://www.scsjournal.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=section&layout=blog&id=1&Itemid=8

    A list of the historical development of the ideas of Socioeconomic Democracy, as presented by this writer, starting in 1968, is available at.

    http://www.centersds.com/biblio.htm.

    We welcome and encourage feedback to this outreach, and look forward to working with all those interested in further peaceful development and implementation of these and other necessary changes aimed at the betterment of all humanity and the total planet.

    Robley E. George

    georgeCSDS@aol.com.
    Director, Center for the Study of Democratic Societies.

    http://www.CenterSDS.com.
    Coordinador, Nonkilling Economics and Business Research Committee.

    http://www.nonkilling.org/node/7.

  56. Sean Cain

    Randy Yoder The point, Randy, is to have NEITHER misbehaving corporations or governments, and I think looking at 200 years of history proves that both capitalism and communism are incapable of doing that.

  57. Brian McCall

    Sean Cain So, replace them both with the misbehavior of the mob. Oh, the mob never misbehaves, yeah? Is that your position? Perhaps you can read up on that somewhere, where the mobocracy was not just as willing as governments or corporations to deny rights to those they disapproved of.

    Prop 8?

    No, Sean. The moral problem is the concept of archy. If a corporation has no authority to rule over me, and a government doesn't either, then what on earth gives a gang of peasants, farmers, or whatever romantic name you call the mob the right to do so? Social democracy is just the same crap, different rulers.

    Perhaps if you weren't so eager to shove another set of rulers to rule over me, I'd be willing to listen to you. But your answer to capitalism, which in its most anarchic form is simply two people meeting and agreeing on an exchange of value, is to put a mob of thugs in between that meeting, shouting orders and issuing decrees. No.

  58. Sean Cain

    Democracy is not the rule of the mob, it is freedom, justice and equality.

    At least you admit to hating the vast majority of working class people and democracy, and want the tyranny of the wealthy and powerful.

    I only wish more right-wing crackpots out there were as honest as you were, Brian.

    The "errors" of social democracy are nothing compared to the errors of kleptocracy and the rule of the tiny corporate elite.

  59. Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani

    Sean Cain Scandnavia. especially denmark and the netherlands have crashing economies with negative GDP, sweden is undergoing massive austerity shifts and tax cuts, and norway can only sustain itself because of oil money (like the fascist Kuwait).
    TOp fucking LEL.
    By the fucking way do you remember what happened to their economy in 1990s? Oh yeah thats right they crashed and millions lost their jobs,
    The GDP of the US per capita is also 10,000 $ more than the PPP per capita of shitholes like denmark.
    FACT denmark is undergoing economic contraction.
    FACT an average american family is likely to own two cars, a family in denmark is not likely to own one
    FACT in the US people have a variety of luxuries and a big house
    FACT in denmark most houses are apartments
    FACT healthcare does not substitute for a better economy
    FACT the US continues to win in all the quantifiable no arbitrary scales

  60. Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani

    Sean Cain . You prove your idiocy again. First the failing economy of scandinavia and now this.
    "Capitalist governments". Those two letters do not go together. Want the highest PPP per capitas in the world? Visit CAPITALIST, SMALL STATE AS % OF GDP ECONOMIC POWERHOUSES LIKE SINGAPORE, HONG KONG, AUSTRALIA and SWITZERLAND, the most STATIST here has a government as percent of GDP at a stunning 32% (switzerland) compare that to USA AT 38%.

  61. Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani

    Sean Cain I did not understand India's license raj was CAPITALIST, I did not know africas social economy plan was CAPITALIST, I did not understand maos revolution was CAPITALIST, I did not know the things which created POVERTY were CAPITALIST.

  62. Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani

    Sean Cain Its their fault for deficit spending and listening to john fucktard keynes

  63. Anonymous

    I guess people in Africa need more dependency on their often corrupt governments and foreign aid shoved down their throats. Its works so far hasn't it? lol Well if you goal is to keep these people eternally poor and starving its worked wonderfully.

  64. Peter Alcantara

    I'll agree about the corporations/political control and revolving door. But can't blame capitalists for what has happened. The govt bailed out wallstreet when then could have put that money to better use giving it directly to the people. there are a lot of former monstanto folks in the current admin and a lot of feds who then take on cushy corp jobs. But we can not buy there products we have control over what products we use. We don't have the same luxury to opt out of Govt. Aid never gets to the people who need it the most. They need to learn to be independent and to do for themselves. I haven't bought any products made by monstanto, dow, P&G etc in years so I'm not supporting their CEO pay. I can't do the same with my taxes so I'm forced to fund a lot of aid and programs that aren't working. You need to see beyond your hate of rich people and thinking that capitalism is evil.

  65. Tony Freeman

    Evonda, are you sure greed is what creates jobs? What happens when we reach an inevitable level of automation and replacing people with machines within the commerce, service and transportation industry becomes less expensive than paying someone to do the job? Do you think this is an unrealistic scenario? Wrong, will happen in less than 20 years, eliminating about 40% of all current jobs. What happens when there is no profit to be made from a problem? Which demonstrably happens all the time, and tends to be the big ones, you know, like world hunger. We have the natural resources to house and feed everyone yet there are 2 billion people starving and 20000 children dieing everyday from preventable diseases. Problems like global warming, on which nothing of significance is being done to reverse it, rather we have the biggest governments bowing down at the will of the greedy companies you admire so much. But wait, MORE greed is what we need, makes sense.

  66. Brian McCall

    Sean Cain Democracy means freedom. Unless you're Socrates, right? Or a Copt in Muslim Brotherhood-ruled Egypt.

    No, there is no inherent property contained in a process that puts people in a position to rule over others by popularity contests that ensures freedom.

    And the idea that two people meeting in an exchange of value is the sine qua non of capitalism. You seem to have a problem when a bunch of people get together to do something with another big group of people, who elect others to be in charge over the organization.

    Oh wait, I thought you loved democracy.

  67. Brian McCall

    Sean Cain Because we were all so wealthy in 1400.

  68. Alan Pugh

    Carol Melcher anyone who uses "liberal" and "socialist" to describe the same person doesn't know the definition of either word. "Liberals" support capitalism. Socialists are not liberal; we don't believe in the market at all. I'm not here to argue the finer points of the article or our individual views, but you should learn the meanings of the words you use.

  69. Rudy Brainbug

    well he is basically a gigantic turd so what do you expect :p

  70. Sean Cain

    Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani I'm not really sure that in the world you're saying here. The economies of Scandinavia aren't "failing." I'm not sure where you get that one from.

    Most of the poorest countries on earth found in the Third World have very little government intervention and low government spending as a percentage of GDP, much lower than the countries you listed above.

    Australia and Switzerland still have much larger roles for government than the poorest countries in the Third World, but lower than the social democracies of Scandinavia.

  71. Sean Cain

    Brian McCall Two people meeting in an exchange is that YOU WOULD LIKE capitalism to be about. The same could happen under democratic socialism as well. I'm not really sure what you're point is here.

    Like most capitalists, you are completely ignoring the dominance of finance capital, large corporations and other failures of global capitalism, like growing inequality, poverty and unemployment, all of which have very little to do with "a bunch of people getting together."

  72. Sean Cain

    Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani I never said that Mao's revolution was capitalist. I think you're seeing ghosts.

    I'm not surprised you "didn't know" those other things. Maybe you should start reading some books on economic history and understand the level of suffering that capitalism, imperialism and colonialism and caused billions of people on the planet.

  73. Sean Cain

    Drozdovandropopozgiopanatzakis Ani Again, the "facts" you present above are pure static, and wouldn't even be worthy of Fox News.

    The economies of Denmark and the Netherlands are not "crashing" any more than global capitalism has since 2008. If you want to compare poverty, homelessness and crime rates in the United States with that of the social democracies of Scandinavia, be my guest.

    The fact that the U.S. has a higher per capita income overlooks the levels of inequality and poverty in the United States, and says nothing about overall quality of life, which again is superior in Scandinavia than the United States in health care, education, the environment, workers' rights, crime and a host of other important social and economic indicators.

    Oh, and by the way (from Wikipedia): In 2007, 48% of Danish households lived in detached houses, 38% lived in flats, and 15% lived in semi-detached or terraced houses. 58% of Danish households owned their own homes and 42% rented their accommodation.

    And you really want to talk about "home ownership" in the United States? You're just making this WAY too easy for me, Ani.

  74. Tee Zackem

    Instead of charity, why not we create a society that HAS NO POVERTY in the first place? What a disgrace!

  75. Tee Zackem

    And a musician with such low level of creativity? Shame on you.

  76. Anonymous

    Wow, that is a lot to spring on a blog post, hence why no one has replied. I read through your comment and a couple of the links and find it completely idealistic and not practical. At first glance socioeconomic democracy sounded like a cute way of dancing around the more recognizable terms of Marxism, Socialism, Communism, in a way that is reminiscent of how the left has branded the word "Progressivism" in order to achieve their agenda.

    But, I certainly wanted to give you the chance, and I'm glad I did. The theory sounds authoritarian in nature, but escapes the centrality of government by allowing citizens to "vote" for income levels, thus creating a democracy.

    However, how is the government shaped that holds these votes and military/infrastructure in society together? It seems to me that whatever government that may be, would hinge upon the principle that Communism holds – a benevolent oversight that appropriates/oversees the common good of the people. True communism has never existed, and there certainly has never been a trusting individual/government that handles this.

    You have listed off every conceivable area of life and assert that socioeconomic democracy will magically fix every one of them, and then cite sources that mostly come from one website, with no real evidence as to how this would solve all of mankind's problems. I think it is a brave and noble endeavor you have set for yourself by forging wealth re-distribution, income gap, capitalism, socialism, and democracy altogether into a utopian society, but I believe we are better off sticking with the Constitution our founding Fathers gave us, which entrusted in us every freedom man could want. Nothing is perfect, but certainly we are better off without someone telling us what we can and cannot earn, EVEN if it is voted for by our peers.

    I guess my end point would be that it is idealistic, and furthermore, unrealistic. I hope there is good intention in the theory, and I believe there is, and hopefully it is not another progressive idea bound in Marxist theory.

  77. Mark Frost

    Kellie Oboyle – You hate a guy who spends much of his time and most of his money in charitable work? Makes sense (not).

  78. Tony Bannach

    So let me get this straight, this guy uses his celebrity, all the money from his music, and all the profits from his other financial developments, and uses a lot of his time and money to help give aid to Africa and essentially convinced GWB that African lives were a worthwhile investment in American money–to the point where now Bush after office is personally opening up health and education centers around Africa—— AND YOU PEOPLE COMPLAIN? dial me up when you've contributed as much philanthropy as bono.

  79. Jon Aguirre

    Randy Yoder you get an A for the day. I guess you understand a thing or two about government and economics.

  80. Jon Aguirre

    Tony Freeman that's the same thing Marx thought would happen. You gotta understand two simple things; time and the advancement of markets. Advancements in technology make the production capacity greater and in less time. This will in turn bring down cost of production which makes prices lower for the consumer. If we want to put more people to work then we should just outlaw tractors and give everyone shovels. The use of tractors has allowed production to increase so that everyone is better off. The people who used to work in the fields moved to the cities where markets expanded and and new ones sprung up to meet demand for their goods and services. Human necessity and ingenuity will prevail.

  81. Stephen Comerford

    Well he does share the practice of tax avoidance with major corporations, paying his tax in Holland rather than than in his own country, Ireland, which is undergoing a major recession.Guess being charitable or even just paying his fair share in Ireland does not appeal to him as it would not get him the global publicity which his gargantuan ego craves.

  82. Hellfire Damnation

    Found this through some Zeitgeist Movement FB account.

    All of you wannabe activists are completely ignoring the fact that he has done and is still continuing to do more charity work than all of you combined will ever accomplish in your entire lifetimes.

    All you are really doing here is kissing your own ass.

    Much respect to Bono for not being a typical leftist-minded rocker, not to mention being a great musician.

    And fuck the Zeitgeist Movement.

  83. Marcus Wauson

    Sean Cain "Democracy means is freedom, justice and equality for literally billions of people around the world."….showing how ignorant you are. Democracy is the opposite of freedom, democracy is two wolves voting to eat the lone sheep. Democracy is only good for the majorities, the minorities get screwed out of everything in a democracy.

  84. Marcus Wauson

    Sean Cain "The idea that workers and the poor are "free" in capitalism to "make their own businesses" and become millionaires is a fantasy" …The idea that the poor are "free" to become millionaires in any system of government is fantasy. However the idea that the poor could become middle class, and later that middle class could become upper middle class and then upper class in capitalism is not a fantasy but a reality. That middle to upper class men and women free from the constrains of a majority rule oppressing them could use human ingenuity to create amazing advances in science and math and all facets of human life, that's capitalism and that creates business, food, wealth and pushes societies to thrive. Democracy is majority rule, and majorities have shown to be irrational, stupid and a hindrance to the advancement of life as we know it.

  85. Dick Burns

    Bono is a douche bag! He'd probably give Oliver Cromwell a BJ.

  86. Juanito D T Ramirez

    Yeah….Giving Ireland a great name!?!? Fucking spineless pushover.

  87. Tommy Gowin

    Ecactly!Put your money where your mouth is! Put up or shut up!

  88. Karen Roberts

    Thank God for people like Bono if there were more people like him in this world it would be a nicer place to live in

  89. David Falzone

    Finally, one of the "Great Unwashed" gets the message. What will it take for the rest of the Socialists to get there? Were proud of you Bono!

  90. David Falzone

    Sean Sean Sean, I'm surprised that you would hate Corporations. If it wasn't for the likes of the Morgan's, Vanderbilt's, Rockefeller's, Job's, and Gate's of the world (and many other Capitalists) you'd be pulling turnips in Kansas to buy toilet paper. How about giving some credit to how those people lifted the lives of 100's of Millions of people throughout the world. Your a fool to think that any other form of Government can do better. Here's a question would you rather be Poor in America or Rich in Somolia? PS: I already know the answer… Stop biting the hand that feeds you.

  91. Jorge E Diaz

    Corporatism is not capitalism. Is the state and corportations screwing people out od their freedom to chose. Capitalism is about freedom to chose who and what you want to trade with

  92. Jorge E Diaz

    Sean Cain you are referring to corporatism or fascism. Capitalism is about free trade and open competition. when corporations see a threat from a smaller competitor, they go to he government to create regulations that favor them. that's lobbying and that's how they keep prices high and bad service. those are the "chosen ones who get bailed out and subsidized by the government they fund.

  93. Jorge E Diaz

    Carol Melcher Thomas Sowell was a marxist even when he was in college until he met Milton Friedman. As time goes by, people learn new things and change their minds on different issues.