I have to disagree with some of your history (not about Laissez-Faire pre-dating Marx, I know that of course), but about China/Russia collapsing (economically) because the system failed to deliver, which people make a logical leap to saying: if it isn't an unrestricted capitalist market, it doesn't work. Millions of dollars were poured into undermining those systems as soon as they began, and Cuba and Vietnam and practically anywhere that had the "wrong" economic system. The bank bailout was not "communism"; communism is not conceived of as state control of anything, yet the cartoon characterisation persists.
"True free market economy" is a idealistic mythical state of affairs. It's almost a religion; as if this current system now is a path to it. It's an almost step-by-step mirror image of the revolution-socialism-communism trajectory that capitalist apologists routinely scorn.
I can't quite fathom your final paragraph when I relate it to the starting post of this topic. The evidence of that documentary (and a thousand others) is that people do carry out back-breaking work for next-to-nothing...effectively for nothing when they remain poor despite working longer hours than you or I have probably ever had to work in our lives. Or anyone should have to work in an allegedly advanced economic world.
Folk are happy to enumerate the misery of Soviet Russia and China (neither of which appeal to me in the least), but less happy to enumerate the far greater numerical atrocities committed in the name of the 'market democracy'. The core problem is this: the delusion that when all is said and done, capitalist markets are value free, economic normality and effective if left alone. They're not. Events like Rana Plaza, Bhopal, Chevron and Shell in Nigeria, etc will persist no matter how much so-called 'development' there is. Why did the U.S. scale down it's murderous interference in Latin America and Africa? Because those countries have been finally forced to sing from the same economic hymn sheet: capitalism. Not hijacked capitalism, capitalism pure and simple. Look there for the authoritarian dictatorship. The only difference is that U.S. propaganda is much more sophisticated than anything dreamed up by the Comintern.
I'd better say no more in this thread because it is way out of the scope of this forum, though very accurately related to this thread.
Edited by Henry Hall, 27 July 2015 - 06:21 AM.