Turkish PM Erdoğan slams greediness and wild capitalism

Turkish PM Erdoğan slams greediness and wild capitalism

ANKARA - Anatolia News Agency
Turkish PM Erdoğan slams greediness and wild capitalism

The economic system based on ‘interest and materiality,’ which dominates the world today, alienates humans, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan says. DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZ

Wild capitalism and the rapacious drive for profits that is driven merely by personal interests and material gains is not a sustainable economic model, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said yesterday.

“I find it helpful to relate here that famous Native Indian proverb: ‘Only when the last tree has died, the last river has been poisoned and the last fish been caught will the white men realize we cannot eat money.’ This is the case [now],” Erdoğan said during a speech at the Competition Authority’s 15th anniversary in Ankara. “Before the world becomes an uninhabitable place, all of humanity should understand that money is not edible and take measures accordingly and implement them urgently.” Erdoğan and his party, however, have been roundly criticized for their aggressive privatization of public institutions and drive to build hydroelectric plants despite local opposition.

“Today’s world is not sustainable,” he said. “The world cannot keep up with such greed, such endless insanity of consumption. ”

“What we face today is the early signs [of such an end];” Erdoğan said. “Such shockwaves are being felt in Greece, Spain, Portugal, Italy and the United States.”

Freedom, justice, the equality of opportunity and law are not concepts belonging to the West, Erdoğan said. “These are concepts that belong to us … and today we have to protect them. We have to improve, grow and rise without oppressing the week, violating the poor, stepping on each other and by keeping the eye on the truth.”

Turkey in no ways defends a conception reflected in proverbs such as “Man is a wolf to [his fellow] man,” or “the big fish eats the little one,” he said.

“When you exactly copy the institutions, lifestyles and systems of the modern world and impose them on the country, success cannot be achieved and [so it was in Turkey]. … Lasting changes are realized where external and domestic dynamics intersect and as much as a society accepts and are in accord with them,” the prime minister said.

Turkey is a nation that values gratefulness, protecting the poor and other traits, he said. “We are members of a civilization that does not separate the economy and morals but places morality in the foundation of economy.”