The goal of this research is to explore if the flaws of capitalism such as greed and selfishness are truly the natural default in the world. Perhaps if it is not, nature may represent an important role model for humanity. Capitalism is an economic system dependent on exploitation and domination. But a potential way out may be studying nature. After researching ecosystems and symbiotic relationships of plants, it is clear that trees within forests have a communal economy of resources in which plants unconditionally support each other. They mutually benefit by sharing nutrients such as important water and minerals and also releasing signals to each other to prepare themselves for weather conditions and invasive species. This system of mutual helpfulness has been demonstrated to improve the quality of life for these plants by improving health, increasing photosynthesis, and greater resistance to natural obstacles. This unfortunately does not exist in capitalism as the majority of laborers in this form of society only receive just enough for their reproduction while capitalists in corporations who are at the top of competition profit immensely. As a result structural inequality is reinforced. The upper class also has a very strong political influence and escapes any repercussions for their over consumption of large amounts of natural resources. But if the abuse of capitalism is so apparent, then why do people accept it? It seems as though the system itself has manipulated the desires of humans and perhaps the image of nature as competitive and brutal derives from capitalist ideology seeking to eliminate threats. Though humans cannot perfectly replicate the selfless nature of the trees, trying to envision a better society and economic system through the lens of natural studies may very well be the path to eliminating the flaws of capitalism.
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Reyes, Jacob, "Capitalism and Natural Symbiosis" (2022). Research Days Posters 2022. 56.