Capitalism is a social system based on the individual’s right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. is the website for the moral social system: laissez-faire capitalism.


1. What is capitalism?

Capitalism is a social system based on the principle of individual rights. The term capitalism is used here in the broader philosophical sense, and not in the narrower economic sense, i.e. a free-market.

Capitalism is not just an economic system (the free-market) that can be grafted onto any political structure. The economy of capitalism — the free market — depends on a specific legal (objective law), political (individual rights), and ethical (rational self-interest) foundation. It is these dependencies that make individuals free not only in their economic affairs but in their personal affairs as well.

All so-called hyphenated-capitalisms (‘state-capitalism,’ ‘anarcho-capitalism,’ ‘crony-capitalism,’ ‘democratic capitalism,’ ‘welfare capitalism,’ etc.) are not forms of capitalism but are mixtures of capitalist and non-capitalist elements. It is these non-capitalist, statist, elements that are responsible for the so-called “failures” of capitalism.


2. What is a capitalist?

An advocate of laissez-faire capitalism is known as a capitalist. For example, though Ayn Rand is regarded economically as a philosopher and novelist, politically she is regarded as a capitalist because of her advocacy of capitalism. Similarly, though Friedrich Engels came from a wealthy background, politically — as co-author of The Communist Manifesto — Engels is recognized as a socialist/communist because of his ideas.

The battle for capitalism is not just an argument over wealth; it is a philosophical one over the individual’s inalienable right to life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of their happiness.


3. What should I do first?

Visit the Capitalism Visual Tour first.

The tour is the most popular feature of this site.

The rest of The Capitalism Site assumes you are familiar with the material provided in the tour.


A visual presentation of the nature of capitalism (estimated time 6 minutes). It is the most popular feature of this site. 


Capitalism Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) covers subjects ranging from antitrust and individualism to selfishness and socialism to help you “chew” the ideas introduced in the tour.


Explore the rich literature of Capitalism. The library features a selection of books on capitalism like Ayn Rand’s classic Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal.

Capitalism Magazine

Capitalism Magazine is a daily magazine featuring articles defending individual rights.

Email Newsletter

Every week the Voice of Capitalism Newsletter delivers capitalism related news, events, and book recommendations to your email box for free.

Capitalism Review

Our daily blog highlighting articles of interest from around the web.

Frequently Asked Questions About Capitalism

Before you browse the questions in this FAQ, please go through the Capitalism Visual Tour. This FAQ assumes you are familiar with the material provided in the Tour.

One of the most revolutionary and powerful works on capitalism—and on politics—that has ever been published.”—Barron’s magazine

Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal by Ayn Rand

“By their silence — by their evasion of the clash between capitalism and altruism — it is capitalism’s alleged champions who are responsible for the fact that capitalism is being destroyed without a hearing, without a trial, without any public knowledge of its principles, its nature, its history, or its moral meaning. . . .

“The method of capitalism’s destruction rests on never letting the world discover what it is that is being destroyed — on never allowing it to be identified within the hearing of the young.

“The purpose of this book is to identify it.”

— Ayn Rand, “Introduction,” Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal

Order the book online | Listen to an excerpt