Can Innovation And Progress Take Place Without Pillage And Plunder?

It can. One could argue capitalism was designed to avoid pillage and plunder and to be a system by which a modern meritocracy replaces the Neanderthal stick.

The problem is that we (in the western world) deployed the wrong version of capitalism, one subjugated to oligarchic freedom and produced quite the opposite of a meritocracy. Today’s capitalism deploys an exclusivity opposite to the inclusion needed to support the evolution of mankind.

All we need to do is subjugate capitalism to real freedom, the unleashing of freedom that yields a dynamic meritocracy.

I have provided more context on capitalism in my recent answer on the state of capitalism here.

The sign of an intelligent nation is its willingness and ability to reinvent itself, upstream. Let’s inspire the world with new rigors of excellence we first and successfully apply to ourselves.

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