Searching for the ghost of Adam Smith, father of capitalism in the Canon Gate, Kirkyard, Edinburgh, Scotland. -1-
On August 4, Friday, I took a train from London to go to the Heathrow Airport. It was common to find graffi on the walls of railroad station as was seen in Italy and New York. Flybe Air took me from London Heathrow to Edinburgh Airport after one & half hour flight. Took a bus from the airport for an 40 minute to get to the graveyard of Adam Smith, Kirkyard. Instructed to walk up the hill for 20 minutes to find High Street and to find a big monument of Adam Smith in the center of High St. The road condition was very slippery by rain enough to fall down easily when put wrong steps. The Statue of Adam Smith stands 15 feet high, overlooking down the city of castle city, Edinburgh, Scotland, with the following engraved epitaph:
THE STATUE OF ADAM SMITH IN HIGH ST. EDINBURGH
The Theory of Moral Sentiment
The Wealth of Nations
Modern free Market
Division of Labour
Moral philosophy in Economics.
Remembering the name of the Scotch whisky Johny Walker and Chivas Regal, mostly desired to drink, which is produced exclusively from this town, I walked down the High Street to find the Canon Gate, Kirkyard, where his tomb was reportedly located. There was an old brick building and its adjacent church. I walked the backyard of the museum building and observed many stone cut monuments on the grass. There are monuments of Dugald Stewart, a philosopher, Judge William Craig, novelist Mary Balfour, a poet Robert Burns, Robert Fugerson, Dr. Charles Alston and biggest monument of James Duncan, an Excise of Edinburgh next to the window gate of Smith epitaph., but no monument of Adam Smith. There were three gold plated signs with Smith’s bronze face “Adam Smith” on the graveyard. I could not find his monument at all. After searching half an hour until the director of museum pointed to the wall behind the old building, where an engraved epitaph was attached to the wall and protected by steel window gate so that no body could touch the epitaph. This is his graveyard. To read this I came here from New York to London, via air plane , train and bus. No graveyard, only wall epitaph. His epitaph reads as[ There are Deposited THE REMAINS OF ADAM SMITH. AUTHOR OF THE THEORY OF MORAL SENTIMENTS, AND WEALTH OF NATIONS. He was born 3th June, 1723 and he died 17th July, 1790.]
My mission is accomplished. This is the man who invented the theory of capitalism by publishing the “ Wealth of Nations” in 1766 with a special emphasis on morality and ethics in conducting business. The basic concept was originated in his “theory of Moral sentiments” that was published in 1759. As a chair of Moral philosophy Dept. of Glasgow University, England which was more popular than Oxford Univ. by galaxy of talents, Smith established the high standard of moral ethics in England along with Sir David Hume. He often discussed with Hume on how to lead man’s sublimest impulses toward order and harmony in the vortex of the complicated industrialization. Moral philosophy covered natural theology, ethics, jurisprudence, and political economy. Natural Theology focused on the search for design in the -2-confusion of the cosmos, expounded natural laws that underlie the seeming chaos of the universe, the search for a grand architecture beneath the hurly-burly daily life beyond the limits of philosophy. As a moral philosopher, he made keen observations ranging from elegant lives of the leisure classes to brute struggle for existence in the meanest form. There has been no evidence that Confucius philosophy influenced his mindset in developing his moral sentiments. He critically examined moral thinking of his time and suggested that conscience arises from dynamic and interactive social relationship through which people seek mutual sympathy sentiments. With this moral sentiments Smith devised mechanism by which society hangs together with individual self interest motives, that conforms to the needs of the group. The mechanism by which the heedless individual is kept in line with everybody else. He defined market in his theory as the acme of individual economic freedom, which is regulated by COMPETITION. Atomistic competition leads that each agent was forced to scurry after his self-interest in a vast social free for all. There are laws of market, law of accumulation, law of population as opposed to law of Motion of Karl Marx.
Smith used the term “Invisible Hand” in History of Astronomy referring the Invisible Hand of Jupiter in the Theory of Moral Sentiments and in the Wealth of Nations (1766) attributing the growth of wealth and prosperity to the division of labor. An individual intends only his own gain and he is in this, as in many other cases, led by an invisible hand to promote an end that was no part of his intention. Starting minute division and specialization of labor, his self-interest pursuit through COMPETITION will set market via INVISIBLE HANDS rather than abiding by it. Although today’s exorbitant growth of government intervention in the market, giant labor union, giant corporation and the huge size of its participants altered the scope of the market mechanism, Smith’s Wealth of Nations invented an essential navigator to the operation of today’ economic life, as long as competition is allowed, along with an ownership of property, to increase an efficiency and productivity. In the sense that the Wealth of Nations for the pursuit of universal opulence sought to extend itself to the lowest ranks of the people, the book still plays a pivotal role as the tower of Babel to lead a nation or an empire by being mindful of the needs of the great laboring mass and promoting the wealth of entire nation. No matter how fancy the socialism and communism ingratiate itself with us, the main tenets of capitalism expounded by Adam Smith will never be blurred so long as mankind seeks and loves liberty, competition, democracy and free will. Being known as a remarkable personality who was absent minded, he lived a quite sheltered life with his mother as a single, would often walk down the cobbled streets with his eyes fixed in infinity and his lips moving in silent discourse. In every pace or two he would hesitate as if to change his direction or even reverse it; his gait was described by a friend as vermicular. His association with French Voltaire, Locke, Stewart, Quesnay, Hume and Manderville was however great asset to him. Although Smith does not have such a grotesque monument as the one of Karl Marx in the Kirkyard, Canon Gate, his insights into historical vision of mankind manifested in the Wealth of Nations are still powerfully shining light on the future life and history of mankind. His ghost along with Karl Marx’s is blessing United Kingdom and the whole world as well.
Dr. Hubert Hojae Lee, commissioner of Human rights, supporter of capitalism.