Capitalism Saves the Day in Chile

Patricio Sepulveda, another rescue worker heads down to the mine where trapped miners are waiting to be rescued from the San Jose mine near Copiapo, Chile on October 13, 2010. (Photo credit: HUGO INFANTE/GOVERNMENT OF CHILE)

The profit = innovation dynamic was everywhere at the mine rescue site.  That’s what the Wall Street Journal’s Daniel Henninger says about the dramatic rescue of the Chilean miners trapped 2,000 feet underground for more than two months.

He attributes the rescue to the Center Rock drill bit manufactured in Berlin, Pennsylvania. The high strength cable that pulled the miners out was made in Germany. Japan provided the flexible fiber optic cable that connected the miners to hope on the surface above. A businessman in Virginia supplied the socks that minimized foot bacteria and infection for the two months the miners were buried.

Even CNN was willing to allow capitalists to appear in a good light and credit them for historic rescue:

In Western Pennsylvania, two companies long-trained by mine collapses in that region rushed to action. They had UPS ship south a specialty drill, capable of creating shafts large enough to fit the men without collapsing, within 48 hours. And UPS did it for free.

Then, working with Chilean crews, Geotec’s Kansas-based partner came up with the plan to get the miners to the surface almost two months earlier than the Christmastime date originally projected.

Expert driller Jeff Hart, a contractor from Denver, Colorado, was called from Afghanistan, where he was helping American forces find water, to man the machine. The 40-year-old drilled for 33 days straight, through tough mineral ore, to reach the men trapped more than 2,000 feet below.

His comment after breaking through last week? “We got the job done.”

It’s a shame that Daniel Henninger should have to explain how the capitalist system resulted in the salvation of these miners, but in our dumbed-down, class-envy fueled culture, it must be explained to roughly half the voters.

In a capitalist country (something the United States was created to be, was for most of our history, and nominally still is), companies exist to make money. If they produce useful goods and services, they succeed in making money. Making money provides the capital for more innovation which in turn helps them make more money.

The student of history (whose mind is not corrupted by anti-capitalist pap from his Leftist professors) or the person who grew up during the Cold War as I did will recall that Marxist countries seldom if ever come up with anything on their own; they usually have to steal ideas from capitalist countries.  Why?

Marxism ignores human nature and removes all incentive for hard work, ingenuity and innovation. When your government will only take away from you what you would otherwise earn for out-performing your fellows, what incentive is there to put in the sweat and midnight oil to do more?

Many countries around the world are pulling away from the Marxist model…even as the socialists currently running the American government yearn to embrace it.

My fellow Americans, we have another powerful lesson, here on the eve of the 2010 elections, illustrating to us why it is so important that we work hard and get out and vote so we can put the socialists in our own government out to pasture.

We need to get the American model of freedom and free enterprise working again!

16 Responses to “Capitalism Saves the Day in Chile”

  1. Amen and well-said, Bob!

    We just got done watching the computer feed of the last miner out, and of course, we were crying and thanking the Lord. The whole world was watching this together, probably more than anything in history, to date. Thanks be to God for the mens’ rescue, and thanks to God for the capitalism that also helped make it possible.

  2. Yes it’s a pretty fantastic story.

    By the way, Chuck Colson’s Breakpoint commentary yesterday spoke of this rescue in illustration of a very important point. I requested reprint permission but haven’t received a reply yet.

    Here it is.

  3. Oh, that’s a great BreakPoint! I’ve always liked Mr. Colson’s commentaries.

    Another non-Darwinian explanation for why some of the miners may have wanted to be last would be for the “fame” of being the last guy out. That also has nothing to do with “survival of the fittest.” 🙂

  4. Oh, that’s a great BreakPoint! I’ve always liked Mr. Colson’s commentaries.

    Another non-Darwinian explanation for why some of the miners may have wanted to be last would be for the “fame” of being the last guy out. That also has nothing to do with “survival of the fittest.” 🙂

  5. It was the silly and I could add sometimes stupid commentators who were making up and speculating about such things as some of the miners wanting to be last out for ‘ fame ‘ reasons . . Are they kidding ? The miners were struggling for their lives and not worried about fame IF they got out. That would be like saying people wanted to be last out of the water when the Titanic went down for noteriety.

    What really happened is that the miners were very organised and structured and followed orders from their crew boss and then from above when discovered. They knew that was their best way to get out and survive rather than bicker whose last. The little underground community they had set up was indeed quite Darwinian !!!

    Biology always prevails ! :-). I must be getting slow, since you almost got this post past me Gina.

  6. There’s nothing hard to believe about the “fame” contention. The situation was pretty solidly to the point that the miners would indeed be rescued–it was only a matter of when. I’m not claiming they WERE arguing about that, because I was not down there. I’m only saying it’s possible those kinds of thoughts could have run through a mind or two. Only the miners themselves could answer that question, and I doubt they would admit to it if it were at all the case.

  7. Oh, so you were just speculating. That is fine. But when I watched the reality of how the men all worked together and followed orders etc. in order to best survive, I kept thinking classic Darwinism.Just classic. Would be a good model for schools to use to teach evolution 🙂

    Now don’t hit me.

  8. Gina

    If I may, let me make one more point about evolution and ‘survival of the fittest’ which non-believers don’t understand.. Our very own Constitution is a classic example of evolution.Vulnerable men from 13 separate and threatened colonies got togehter and forged a document of unity and laws, so that they could better function as a group which offerred them more safety and protection. If the colonies then became less vulnerable then each individual involved in writing and designing the Constitution became less vulnerable. thus survival better assured. The Constitution is a classic example of how the individual uses the group in order that he stands a better chance of survivng himself !! Beautiful isn’t it !

  9. Actually, that’s not Darwinian at all. It would have been survival of the fittest in the Darwinian model. The man or men best able to secure those limited resources of food and water they had in the early days of this crisis would have taken them from the weaker and thus better ensured their own survival.

    If you haven’t read Colson’s piece on this issue, you should. From beginning to end, this whole thing proves that while our dominant society claims to laud Darwinism, it doesn’t really believe it.

    I thought of writing an article before Colson’s came out, but I never got around to it. The theme would have been to point out that, if we really believed in Darwinism, we would have abandoned efforts to rescue these miners on Day One. Why should we expend all this time, effort, money and resources on a few highly evolved animals? It makes no sense. All those resources could be much more efficiently utilized somewhere else. And what would have happened if the miners were allowed to die down there? Nothing. Not a dog-gone thing. Some 33 highly evolved but easily replaceable animals would be dead and providing food for the worms, nothing more.

    The fact that we tried to move heaven and earth for more than two months to rescue these “animals” proves we don’t really believe they are just highly evolved animals. Rather, it proves that we still recognize that those 33 men were unique human beings, created in the image of God, with lives of great value to other human beings and their Creator, and because of that, it was imperative we do all we could to save those precious lives.

    Some of us may claim to be Darwinists, but virtually all of us still live like creationists when the rubber meets the road.

  10. I understand evolution and survival of the fittest pretty well (better than most evolutionists), probably because I used to believe in them.

    What the founders did was contrary to survival of the fittest. From a survival standpoint, it was insane for them to declare independence. They were a disorganized bunch of rabble colonists who proposed taking on the most powerful empire on earth at that time. The odds were BADLY against them. From a practical, survival standpoint, what they did made no sense at all.

    From a Christian standpoint, it made all the sense in the world. As our founding document recognized, it wasn’t about mere survival. It was about asserting the rights that were given to us by our Creator, even at great cost of resources, even at the cost of life altogether.

    From an atheistic, evolutionary perspective, cooperation makes survival sense sometimes, and at other times it is contrary to the best odds of survival for the individual organism.

    What’s more, the attribution of this sense of purpose and cooperation blindly in random nature (especially in what evolutionists would classify as lower, unintelligent life forms) is contrary to evolutionary doctrine itself. In other words, it assumes purpose where none exists. Such claims assume an underlying or overriding priority for the preservation of the species…when there is no reason whatsoever for the individual organism to give a rat’s proverbial whether the species survives or not.

    It’s interesting that evolutionists cannot escape the need for purpose in the universe…even as they deny the existence of the foundation for purpose.

    At one time I could not see these glaring contradictions because I consumed evolutionary assumptions with little thought or challenge, so I understand that they are not obvious to the disciple of evolution theory. But once the information is before us, we have a simple choice: take the comfortable and easy way by turning our mental eyes away from their glaring truth…or step forward on the frightening path of challenging long-held assumptions that are now revealed as shifting sand and follow the evidence where ever it leads.

    I made that choice some 12-13 years ago, and walked trembling from the tiny box that had been the parameters of my thinking into the vast, boundless world of wonder that is the universe.

    I guarantee you that if you face that evidence head on, like Anthony Flew you will be amazed and enchanted by what you find.

  11. I think the mine rescue operation was an excellent example of collaboration between government and private enterprise. The government managed the operation and provided massive funding. Private enterprise, as you point out, provided the technology.

    I’ll be interested to follow the investigation into how the collapse came about. Certainly there’s a question of whether some safety procedures were bypassed in the interest of profit. This is, after all, a privately-owned mine in a capitalist country.

  12. I mentioned this in Colsons article, but not all behavior by humans is Darwinian which most creationists don’t understand. Compassion for a wounded deer or buried miners or sadness over the dead doesn’t have to be Darwinist, nor is compassion or feeling remorse or feeling the need to help fellow humans the domain of the religious.

    Despite what Colson says, many animals will indeed fight off preditors to their peril even if they are defending a baby of which they are surrogates. Walruses and elephants commonly display this altruistic behavior without a trancendent code. I believe it is the Cuckoo bird that will sit on another species egg out in the cold, rain, elements, preditors etc. until it is hatched.

    How many humans would do that ? 🙂

  13. Whether it be a human or animal, without an intelligent designer, there is no reason for such altruistic behavior. There is no reason for the organism to care in the slightest about the survival of its own or any other species. For that matter, there is no reason for it to care about its own survival, but there definitely is none to motivate it to give of its own energy and resources for another organism.

    The fact that parent organisms display this illogical (in the Darwinian worldview), selfless behavior which is contrary to the most logical actions for the survival of the subject organism is evidence of a Creator. Such behavior only makes sense if it was programmed into the organism by a purposeful Creator.

    This is one of the things that evolutionists have an extremely hard time grasping. You instinctively and almost cannot help but attribute purpose and reason to a universe that you claim has no reason or purpose.

    There is tremendous irony there, but somewhat understandable. Our Creator designed us and the universe with great purpose and reason, so it is natural that we would expect to see purpose in every area of existence…even if a part of our intellect is dedicated to maintaining the notion that there is no purpose or reason to the universe.

    You see, even atheists and evolutionists inadvertently illustrate evidence of the Creator. 🙂

  14. The purpose argument !!

    Just what is the ‘purpose’ of the universe you mentioned ? What is the purpose of a nebula one billion light years away from us. For that matter, what is the purpose of a lugnut ? It has no conscience. I know it has a purpose but it doesn’t know it has a purpose. Surely if a lugnut has purpose then I can have purpose. My daughters think I have purpose. My wife does too ( most of the time ). I promised my wife I would wash her car today. Does that give me purpose.I say yes. When my daugthers got married, my purpose was to kiss them and send them off at the altar and pay for the weddings !!

    I think you are looking at purpose from a very narrow definition and scope. When my daughters come to visit us and hug me all at once and tell me they will see me in 3 months, i have a purpose to stay alive, take care of myself and my wife, keep the house in order and wash that danged car again. I also want to make sure my wife is cared for and protected so they will enjoy her joy once again.

    I think you are starting with the a priori assumption that if one doesn’t believe in some higher power that they must answer to, that they can’t have a purpose .Well again I know the lugnut has purpose and no deity is needed for that. Just who gets to decide who has purpose. My family and friends seem to think I have purpose and while that is wonderful, I persosnally don’t think in terms of my purpose. I let others like my family and friends think about it if they desire to do so.

    Broaden your narrow definition of purpose and you will see what I mean ! 🙂

    I am now going to pay $ 9.99 for a car wash for the PURPOSE of making my wife happy, oherwise she will give me that look. That will give a fellow purpose I promise. I know that is not the type of purpose you are thinking about, but again who decides or defines this purpose.

  15. God created the universe with a purpose. I couldn’t pretend to understand but a fraction of it, but I know it displays his power, genius and glory. The Bible also tells us the stars and planetary bodies are useful for determining the passage of time, and they have been invaluable in navigation here on earth for thousands of years.

    I’m sure you’ve changed a tire before, so I’m pretty sure you know the purpose of a lug nut. It, like the universe and everything in it, was created for a purpose.

    However, if the universe just happened for no reason, spontaneously came to form stars and planets (in contradiction to scientific law, I might add) for no reason, life some how managed to form (in contradiction to scientific law) for no reason, and evolved (in contradiction to scientific law) into highly developed forms for no reason, then neither you nor I nor your wife or daughters have any purpose whatsoever. We just happened. We are accidents that simply happened to come about, and have no purpose at all.

    Yes, I’m sure they were grateful to utilize you and your resources to give them a nice wedding. But you didn’t have to do that. You weren’t created specifically for that purpose, and if your existence is an accident of nature, you definitely don’t have that for a purpose. In fact, your expenditure on such a wedding was illogical and inconsistent with Darwinian principles of survival. There was no reason whatsoever to waste valuable resources on another animal (even if she was your offspring) to have an aesthetically pleasing celebration of her decision to mate with another human animal; your money could have been better spent ensuring your own survival, especially since you were the one who expended the time and energy to accumulate those resources. There is nothing to be shown for all the fancy flowers, dresses and decorations. What a tremendous and illogical waste! There was no rational reason whatsoever to provide joy for another human animal; in a few years, that animal will be dead and eaten by worms, still with no purpose at all.

    I hope you’re starting to see the point. And by the way, I’m not starting with the “a priori assumption that if one doesn’t believe in some higher power that they must answer to, that they can’t have a purpose .” Rather, that is the assumption of atheistic Darwinianism. If I spill a bowl of spaghettios on the floor of my kitchen, that mess on the floor has no purpose whatsoever. It is an accident that just happened to happen, just like you, all the rest of us human-animals, and the universe itself.

    As I acknowledged before, I understand this is very hard to step outside the flow of assumptions and view the consequences and implications of our ideas. But if you’re going to understand your own worldview, that’s what you must do. You’re still mixing creationist assumptions with atheistic ones in order to create a more pleasing existence, but it isn’t consistent.