Selfish Citizenship recognizes John Allison as the Capitalist of the Year. As an individual, he has made a significant contribution to advancing capitalism in politics.
John Allison had been the successful head of BB&T, who has stood against the financing of eminent domain projects, and protected BB&T’s shareholders and clients from the bad investments encouraged by destructive federal interventions into the economy. Also, he has lead investments in ethics education in college business instruction.
This year, he organized businessmen against government policies attacking our rights to contract, free association, and property. He personally spoke around the country for individual rights, freedom, and economic liberty. Further, he took the helm at the Cato Institute to reform that organization.
His most significant new contribution to the advancement of capitalism is his recent book: The Financial Crisis and the Free Market Cure: Why Pure Capitalism is the World Economy’s Only Hope. Correcting the misinformation from government, politicians, and the media, Allison proved that the catalyst of our economic downturn was government interventions in the economy, but that the cause of this crisis is the ideas behind those policies. Further, he makes the case that the cure is the ideas that lead to liberty by protecting individual rights.
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s analysis of this crisis amounts to a feckless identification of concrete correlations; and, the celebrated Peter Schiff achieves at best the identification of manifestly evident integrations. In contrast, Allison’s root cause analysis drills down to the underlying ideas that have caused many political failures while he maintains a fully integrated context that allows him to identify the correct solution, which is consistent with man’s nature as a rational being of volitional consciousness who survives by the products of his mind and acts of virtue.
While Mr. Allison has identified the cause and the solution, it is up to each of us individually in the conduct of our lives to choose the selfish path to improve our own lives. In today’s context, where productivity too often is legally dependent upon government permission, in an act of self-defense, part of our energy will be diverted to political issues, even if we would prefer that it be otherwise.
Where to start? Following Allison’s example, here are some actions that you could take in the new year:
- object to destructive government policies that impact you personally,
- speak up affirmatively for individual rights, justice, and freedom in the face of collectivism, and
- affiliate with other individuals who share your values.
Well done Mr. Allison; may the virtue that you have demonstrated be rewarded with the success that it merits.