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"Social Democracy and the Old Horse" by James Jones

This is a simple metaphor to illustrate how a social democratic society might view and manage its relationship with capitalism. --- We have a horse. Her name is Capitalism. She's an old horse, pulling us along in a cart. She's been a good horse, mostly. However, she is winding down and not looking too good. We need her to get us through the desert, to our destination. We do our best to keep her alive and as healthy as possible but we know that we can't stop her from dying. We don't euthanize her. In her case, that would be unnecessary and, therefore, cruel - and it would leave us stranded in the desert. So we help her and she helps us. She most certainly has her flaws and they get even worse as she gets older. She always favored the guys in the top hats and sometimes kicks and bites us regular folks. We don't take it personal She's an animal, afterall. We are glad we all have healthcare. We understand the importance of choosing good cart-drivers. A good driver will keep her on the trail and keep a tight hold upon the reins when she's going through one of her tantrums. We've also found that a good veterinary physician is likewise indispensible. The doc will give her some tranquilizers when she's in a foul mood and fix up her sprained and broken legs - even those legs that sometimes kick at us. We're learning to keep our distance when she's in one of those foul moods, so no one gets kicked or bitten as much. When she's in a good mood, however, we all enjoy how she trots along at a quick pace and the slight breeze upon our skin. We do our best to keep her going. She has gotten us this far. Well, as it happens, she's pregnant. And one of these days she'll give birth to her foal. We'll call this particular baby, Socialism. We care for the old horse, we make sure we all get through the desert, and we see to it that the old horse is comfortable so her final days are peaceful. We give her the best possible care as she gives birth to Socialism. We'll try to remember the good things about the old horse, but the new one will be way better. "To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven."

July 25, 2023

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