Does Capitalism Exploit Workers?

The idea that capitalism exploits workers stems from Karl Marx’s work in the late 1800s. Although the definition of “exploitation” has changed since then, many still believe capitalist systems take advantage of vulnerable workers. Prof. Matt Zwolinski explains why capitalism actually tends to protect workers’ interests. And Zwolinski contends that even if it were exploitative, increasing political regulation and control would actually make the problem worse. Increases in government make citizens more vulnerable to the state. Political officials are tempted to exploit this vulnerability for the benefit of the politically well connected. Unlike free market transactions, which are mutually beneficial, when politics is involved one party’s gain usually comes at someone else’s expense.

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