Capitalism is an important principle in economics. The important elements of economic productivity (production capacity) are manpower (including human labor and human intelligence), resources (including natural water, land, mines, energy, and biology), capital (the tools of trade beyond the era of barter transactions, the value measurement of products and production capacity, and the catalysts for production and consumption), markets (including gathering places of manpower, consumer, and capital, such as factories, mines, stores, and financial centers) and transportation (including water, land, air, electricity, communication, and information data). Capitalism puts capital at the top of economic elements, so there is a saying that no money no business. Capital has a catalytic effect, but it is by no means a panacea, nor is it the only major contributing factor in the economy. When starting an economy, the above-mentioned elements (or factors) all serve different needs, and the needs of different components vary according to the time, place, and environment. When the economy grows, the required contributing elements may also change due to time, place, and people changes. The accumulation and catalytic effect of capital will greatly impact economic development. This is the reason why capitalism cannot be totally rejected. But capitalism will also cause a serious social problem, capital will likely be accumulated in the hands of a few people. That is, capital will become larger and larger and become more and more concentrated, resulting in a huge gap between the rich and the poor. Then society cannot be balanced and remain harmonious. In the end, many social problems will arise, causing social unrest and instability. Therefore, capitalism cannot be promoted without regulation.
America is a powerful capitalist country. There are many natural reasons why it has become the world's most powerful nation in less than 250 years since its establishment. Political scholars, economists, and historians have done many professional studies, analyses, and comments, but often professional theories are not applicable directly to complex, national, and global economic changes in the world, such as the current economic situation under the influence of the US-China competition. The present U.S. national security strategy and economic planning are more influenced by ideology than based on any thorough professional studies. So, there are different voices, even opposite opinions at home and abroad. The social and economic conditions in the U.S. are full of problems and few solutions. The U. S. economic status as the world's number one economy is precariously unstable and being challenged. In contrast, China and other countries are developing rapidly in their economies. The social problems in the U.S. are not just divided opinions but are exhibited by torn social fabrics. These social problems and phenomena can be traced and analyzed following the founding history of the U.S. and the evolution of its political and economic system. The U.S. is a country that practices and protects capitalism, any program initiated by socialism is carried out and managed by a capitalist system. (For example, the social security system or any retirement system.) We can observe how capitalism played a role in the U.S. as it grew, peaked, and declined in its 250 years of history and explain why the capitalist military-industrial complex driven hegemony would eventually lead to a road of no return.
It was a very lucky and smooth process for the U.S. to launch a revolution resisting high taxation to gain independence from British colonial control. In just a few years, the U.S. got rid of the control of the British Empire. In comparison, China’s revolutionary for establishing a republic nation took nearly a century of struggle under the oppression of the great Western and Japanese Imperial powers. During the eighteenth to the nineteenth century, various political and economic ideologies flourished, and the U.S. adopted capitalism and the democracy of people-elected governments. But its road to power mainly owes to the following factors. First, the U.S. is centrally located in the North American continent, a vast land with abundant resources. Second, the U.S. is well protected by the Atlantic Ocean on the East Coast and the Pacific Ocean on the West Coast, away and free from disputes and wars in Europe and Asia. In the two world wars, the U.S. was able to stay out of conflicts to earn war money by trade and join the wars later to receive victory dividends. As a result, the U.S. economy has become the number one in the world, and the U.S. industries, agriculture, manufacturing, and commerce are all leading in the world. All the economic factors in the U.S. are strong and nothing lacking. Coupled with the catalyst effect of capital, the US economy once reached 40% of that of the world. However, under the impetus of extreme capitalism, the U.S. naturally or greedily prefers the highly profitable military industry, creating the world's largest military-industrial complex, pursuing hegemony, and controlling the world with military (industrial) power and military alliances. If it weren't for the other military hegemony, the Soviet Union, the U.S. would have become the sole global hegemon long ago. The disintegration of the Soviet Union in 1990 was caused by its failing economy. If the military-industrial complex could not make enough money and only had war consumption, it would naturally drag down the economy. That's why the Soviet Union collapsed. Although the U.S. won the Cold War against the Soviet Union, its military-industrial complex could not completely support the U.S. hegemony strategy alone with other industries being neglected, so the U.S. economy eventually declined to 20% of the world's economy. On the other hand, China's economy has risen to 17-18% of the world's economy while maintaining three times or greater than the U.S. economic growth rate (GDP).
If the major changes in the world are not caused by wars (World War I and World War II) but by natural disasters, such as earthquakes, floods, fires, and epidemics, the U.S. may also develop into the world's strongest power. It may become the world's major food supplier, the global medical provider, and not a military hegemony. Perhaps the world will not have many wars as there have been after World War II. The economy needs capital, and capital stimulates the economy as a catalyst. It is a pity that the U.S. has embarked on the road of military-industrial-complex driven hegemony, since this is a road of no return. It is easy to understand why the U.S. wants to sell arms for high profit, and why it wants to start wars forced by the military-industrial complex. But arms consumption is a negative factor for human prosperity. (War creates negative productivity.) Eventually, humans suffer and disappear. The U.S. national strategy today is very similar to a life of a drug addict who knows that drug use is harmful, but too addicted to quit. The U.S. national debt is getting bigger and bigger, and the U.S. society is getting more and more torn apart. This is the consequence of capitalist military-industrial-complex driven hegemony. The reason is not difficult to understand. All countries in the world should understand this truth. The U.S. must be persuaded to take a rehab and stop going down this road of no return. China's economic growth has a rational gene of “lifting people out of poverty and providing opportunities for gaining wealth”. Facing the pressure of competition between the U.S. and China, we must rationally learn from the past (the Soviet Union collapsed because of military-industrial-complex hegemony) and accept our present reality (the U.S. is seriously in debt, $100,000/person). We must give up our addiction to capitalist military-industrial-complex-driven hegemony to embrace cooperation for mutual benefits.