Until just recently, barely 1/3 of the world has truly been a part of the Capitalist system. The U.S., Canada, Western Europe, Australia and Japan pretty much comprised the entirety of the Capitalist world until just a few decades ago. Now, China, India, and the rest of South East Asia are hopping into the game. China, India, and most of South East Asia aren't really on equal footing with the old-school capitalist nations yet; they're pretty much just exporting goods and doing cheap labor, but that's how it starts. Soon enough (50-100 years or so), these countries will have generated enough capital to become important consuming countries as well. By then, some other part of the world will have picked up the slack as the region which all the cheap labor is. At this point, it'll be between Africa, South America, and the Middle East. Presumably, within a few hundred years, the whole world will be intergrated into the Capitalist system. With the effective doubling of the number of consumers in the world (China + India have over 1/3 of the world's population together), the demand for cheap goods will rise hugely, allowing for the effective employment of massive amounts of people in currently impoverished areas of the world. For the history of Capitalism, the situation has always existed that the poor became empowered through being employed by the rich. American workers 100 years ago still worked in sweat-shop conditions, but through the nearly full employment of the American labor market and wage competition, the American people became some of the richest people in the world. When internationalism became easier, the trend developed (and continues today) that rich countries would rely on poor countries for cheap manufacturing and cheap labor. This is pretty much what's driving India and China's economic booms. But when India and China catch up with the rest of the Capitalist world, we reach an interesting point. The potential for employment of people in cheap factory labor becomes hugely increased, since the amount of people on relatively equal footing in the capitalist world doubles to about 2/3 of the population of the world. Presumably, when the people in China and India have comprable wealth to those in Japan, Canada and England, the growth rate in the then 3rd world will grow at an increasingly faster rate, as more and more people are out there to demand cheap labor. Eventually, through rich countries relying on poor countries for work, the whole world (save a few particularaly troubled areas) should be synthesised into the Capitalist system. Further down the line, with wage competition and all that, most people should be on relatively equal footing. It obviously won't be perfect, just like how not every country in Western Europe is equally as prosperous, but the analogy should be simmilar to those between Western nations of today. But what happens at that point? Forever, the rich have relied on the poor to do their work, and profits were great if you could have your products made by the poor and then sell them to the rich. But when huge gaps in wealth are all but erased by wage competition, what happens? At that point, there is no more potential for the ridiculous growth that we have today. Furthermore, at that point (however many hundred years down the road), the world will be all the more intergrated, and presumably, it will matter less and less where a product is made in terms of it's cost and ease of aquisition. So what might happen? How might Capitalism survive if it has no room to expand? What I'm thinking is that when Capitalist Valhalla is finally reached, we might actually end up in a Dictatorship of the workers, through totally Capitalist means. When the whole world is on relatively equal footing, and there are no vast poor job markets to exploit, profits for companies of all sorts will naturally be much lower. Without vast numbers of unemployed people, competition will drive wages up dramatically, again cutting into profits. Laborers and Consumers will enjoy constantly increasing sway in all markets, while those who control the factors of production will have to be more and more atune to laborer's and consumer's needs and wants to actually attain a profit. Jobs that currently pay low wages, such as farming and factory work will have to pay substantially higher wages, since the demand for food and manufactured goods will be so high and there will be no impoverished markets to draw cheap labor and manufacturing from. Pretty much all jobs will have to pay relatively equal wages. It's a basic function of capitalism; that if one job pays unduly high wages, people will flock to it until wages are competed down, and that if one job pays unduly low wages, people will not want to work in it unless wages are raised. When you have a future in which all people are on equal footing, the wages for all jobs will have to be essentially cometed down to paying wages that are overall much more comprable than they are now. With all the competition squeezing out massive profits and the differences in wages, Capitalism seemingly leads to a place not unlike Marx's workers paradise. When the workers are the consumers, and they all have relatively equal sway, they will all fight for their own self interest so vehemently that the power of producers will seemingly fade away until there is barely any sort of profit left to be made. Capitalism = Communism. :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: Just to clarify a bit, there was a central question to this thread. Here it is restated and simplified: When profits have been competed down to the bare minimum possible, and there are no longer huge pools of unemployed workers to draw upon for cheap labor, what happens to Capitalism?