Melinda Gates: Capitalism Is Better Than Socialism, But Needs Fixing

For Melinda Gates, capitalism still trumps socialism despite the former’s flaws.

In an interview with CNBC, the wife of Microsoft founder Bill Gates and co-chair of Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation said she would rather live in a capitalistic society than in a socialist one.

Gates aired her comment as U.S. politicians debate on whether capitalism or socialism is best for the country. Many Democratic lawmakers and presidential candidates have demanded extensive changes in the political system, which they say is responsible for the country’s growing income inequality and division. Pres. Donald Trump, along with some Republicans, accused them of promoting socialism, which he says would result in a significant economic catastrophe in the U.S.

While defending the existing U.S. system, Gates recognised the need for closing the gaps between the wealthy and the poor. She also said that Americans are “lucky” because of living in a capitalist society, which people in developing countries can only dream of residing.

She said that in her trips to poor countries like Malawi, Tanzania, or Senegal, she heard their desire to live in America, and stressed that Americans are fortunate or being a capitalistic society. All the country needs is to “tune it and get it right.”

She also called for adequate government regulation and a stable taxation system to fix capitalism’s gaps.

Many super-rich Americans have claimed that the present version of capitalism is not working. Wealthy businessmen like Warren Buffett, Bill Gates, Jamie Dimon, and Ray Dalio have warranted to fix the widening economic inequality as well as the lack of funding for public education. Some are promoting higher taxes on the wealthy and public-private partnerships to address worsening income inequality.

And like Melinda Gates, these business leaders also denounce the idea of U.S. embracing socialism. Dimon, JP Morgan CEO recently told shareholders that this economic system would produce stagnation and corruption. He too acknowledged the need for addressing the flaws of the American type of capitalism.