The Left has seized on our economic troubles as an excuse to "blame the rich guy" and paint a picture of capitalism and the free market as selfish, greedy, and cruel. Democrats in Congress and Occupy protesters across the country assert that the free market is not only unforgiving, it's morally corrupt. According to President Obama and his allies, only by allowing the government to heavily control and regulate business and redistribute wealth can we ensure fairness and compassion. Exactly the opposite is true, says Father Robert Sirico in his thought-provoking book, Defending the Free Market: The Moral Case for a Free Economy. Father Sirico argues that a free economy actually promotes charity, selflessness, and kindness. In Defending the Free Market, he shows why free-market capitalism is not only the best way to ensure individual success and national prosperity but also the surest route to a moral and socially just society. Father Sirico shows why we can't have freedom without a free economy, why the best way to help the poor is to a start a business, why charity works-but welfare doesn't, and how he himself converted from being a leftist colleague of Jane Fonda and Tom Hayden to recognizing the merits of a free economy. In this heated presidential election year, the Left will argue that capitalism may produce winners, but it is cruel and unfair. Yet as Sirico proves here, capitalism does not simply provide opportunity for material success-it ensures a more ethical and moral society as well.
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