In a classic capitalist state the money rules, this is called a plutocracy it defines a society or a system ruled and dominated by the small minority of the wealthiest citizens. The United States of America is a plutocracy, as all political power is centralized into two capitalist political parties. Both the Democratic Party and Republican Party fight for power. Millions of dollars are used to fight each-others opponent, but in the end both parties support the demands of Wall Street and the American capitalist class. Elections in the USA are all about show, a giant entertainment show used to portray the USA as a democracy. We see this in North Korea too, were massive propaganda is used to brainwash the people into believing their nation is socialist. In a way the Americans and North Koreans do not differ so much. Both nations are led by corrupt and greedy people!
History is filled with examples of people dying because profits were put before safety. A classic example of this is the sinking of the RMS Titanic in April 1912. The Titanic and her sister-ship the RMS Olympic were build to carry 2.200 passengers and crew. However the ship only carried lifeboats for 1.200 people. Safety regulations were outdated because ship companies like the White Star Line, Cunard Line, Hamburg-America Line and the Norddeutscher Lloyd were in a competitive race. No national government decided to update the regulations, because the transatlantic market was a huge source for profits. The owners of Titanic and Olympic also believed that more lifeboats on the boat-deck, would be a hinder for rich first class passengers. So the number lifeboats was matched to the outdated regulations. 1.500 people had to die first before the rules were changed!
Capitalism always puts profits before human safety. Alaska Airlines Flight 261 went down in January 2000, because of poor maintenance on the MD-80 aircraft. The company ordered the ground crew to limit maintenance checks, to keep the aircraft flying longer. Capitalist greed resulted in the deaths of 88 people, when a vital component of the tail broke sending the aircraft into a spiral. Had there been more maintenance checks this crash could have been prevented. But Alaska Airlines wanted to keep its profits high, so they kept the aircraft flying often!
South Korea is also a plutocracy. When we look at this Asian nation we think to see a modern democratic state, but this is just a show. Under all those modern buildings lies a system of deep political conservatism with classic capitalist greed, which puts profits before safety. Capitalists hate it when governments tell them follow safety regulations. In South Korea the government has always been on the side of those who own businesses. Since 1948, the Republic of Korea has been ruled by pro-capitalist leaders. Dictator Syngman Rhee ruled with iron fist, but was forced out of office by massive protests in 1960. South Korea then became a military dictatorship until 1987. After the end of the Cold War, the Korean ruling class allowed more freedom of speech, but only for those who supported the Republic of Korea and the capitalist system!
Korean Air is the airliner of South Korea. Between 1970 and 1999 they lost 16 planes with the loss of over 700 lives. The airliner was very unsafe because the government of South Korea did not enforced strict safety regulations, this allowed the airliner to put profits before safety. In 1969, Korean Air became a private enterprise and was sold to the Hanjin Group, a powerful capitalist holding company. Like most Asian capitalists, the owners of Hanjin wanted nothing more but high profits. Since the government of South Korea remains a tool of them, regulations are often ignored. This led to another ship disaster, which caused the death of many school childern.
The MV Sewol was a Japanese build ferry and owned by the Cheonghaejin Marine Company, who renovated the ship in 2012. Modifications included adding extra passenger cabins on the third, fourth and fifth decks, raising the passenger capacity by 181 and increasing the weight of the ship by 239 tons. After the ship was checked by the government, it was giving the green light to start carrying passengers and cargo to the islands of southern Korea. Unfortunate the renovations caused a change in the balance of the MV Sewol. On 16 April 2014, the ship made a sudden turn to port and capsized. On board were 476 people including many school children. It took two hours for the ship to sink, however after only 30 minutes the list to port was so heavy that walking became impossible. Because the captain had ordered all passengers to their carbines, many were trapped as the ship turned over!
293 died on 16 April 2014 as the MV Sewol capsized and sank. 174 were saved from the water by Korean Coast Guard ships and helicopters. To blame for this disaster is partly the crew, who did not ordered an evacuation until the list to port was too heavy. The captain never ordered the life-rafts to be deployed, he saved himself by leaving his ship while 300 people remained on board. Many South Koreans blame the government, because they failed to safe the children. But revolutionary socialists blame the government for allowing a ship to sail that was out of balance and overweight. The MV Sewol did not sink because she made water, she capsized because of a sudden turn to port. Ships are build not to capsize, yet the MV Sewol did capsize in a very calm sea!
Although safety regulations have been improved since the days of the military dictatorship, many say that the South Korean government is still not strict enough in enforcing these regulations. This is because the government is capitalist and supports the system of greed and exploitation. Safety regulations means more costs and more costs means less profits for the owners of businesses. Many big corporations hate regulations, because they limits their profits. If workers and their family are to die, the capitalists don't care. They only start to care when the population turns against them!
700 people died because Korean Air was unsafe between 1970 and 1999. The airline has improved its image and is now considered save. But many capitalist enterprises in South Korea care very little about safety regulations. When they are exposed they will apologize and many will beg for mercy, by then it will be too late and people will have died. So we ask, how many are to be killed? How many more lives are to be ruined before governments do what they should do, to take care of people? Unfortunate revolutionary socialists know that a capitalist government will always put the needs of the ruling class before that of the working class. Because the capitalists make money, politicians dance at their feets. Bullshit.....we workers create the wealth of this world. Yet only 85 billionaires own more money then 3,5 billion people all together. Now with the economic crisis, the capitalist governments want to deregulate more markets, giving more power to corporations and capitalist greed. This has to stop, we must put an end to capitalism and to those who put profits before everything. Socialism puts people before profits and our safety first. We need a new economic system!
But the ruling class is very smart. They use workers against workers, by brainwashing people with lies the capitalists manage to keep their right-wing politicians in power. This works very well in conservative societies like South Korea, Japan and Taiwan. Although these nations are democracies, the working class has been drilled to support capitalist rulers. It has very much to do with tolerance. Most of these societies are hostile to progressive ideals, we see this in South Korea. In the Republic of Korea ( south ), supporters of socialism still face discrimination and harassment. The conservative South Korean government has jailed many leftists and uses the National Security Law to arrest Koreans, who reject the ruling class and capitalism. These leftists are then denounced as North Korean ''sympathizers'' and ''enemies of the free democratic nation''!
The lack of workers parties also limits the class consciousness of workers. Japan has a communist party, but this party is very moderate and lacks a genuine socialist program. In South Korea, any party based on Marxist socialism is banned and Taiwan only legalized a communist party in 2008, after banning Marxist socialism for 50 years. Building socialism in strict conservative societies is difficult, because these societies lack tolerance and respect for ideals that oppose theirs. So each year we hear about people dying because of capitalist greed. As long as this outdated and unfair economic system rules this planet, many more lives will be destroyed!