In a passionate defense of the free market as the best system to pull people out of poverty, the Secretary of State said it was time to challenge the public’s misconception of capitalism as composed exclusively of greedy bankers and unscrupulous businessmen.
“I am a proud capitalist. It's not something you'll hear a lot of people say, certainly not politicians ... For hundreds of years, capitalism has been lifting people out of poverty ... Over time it has been improved, it has been defined and it has helped us spread democracy around the world ... [Yet,] for many, in 2015, capitalism is a 'dirty word' ... ”
The huge gap between reputation and reality, he said, had been ‘brilliantly exposed’ by Tim Montgomerie, the Legatum Institute Senior Fellow, in his report ‘Prosperity for All’. Montgomerie, Mr Javid said, clearly explained how successful capitalists made possible the financing of education, the NHS, and infrastructure projects that all citizens benefitted from.
The son of immigrants, Mr Javid stressed that capitalism did not care about the colour of your skin, or where your parents came from. "Legatum's annual Prosperity Index repeatedly shows that the most prosperous nations on earth are those that are economically free," he said. Yet, Montgomerie's Prosperity for All research indicated some alarming polls that showed that the public, not only in Britain or in the developed world, but in countries such as Indonesia, had a low opinion of business.
The Secretary of State went on to say that he was proud of the way this government was capable of some judicious interventions to help clean up the image of capitalism and capitalists: the new apprenticeship levy and the living wage, as well as easing the regulatory burden on small banks were part of a government strategy for supporting business.
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