How Capitalism Causes Mental Illness

Capitalism and Mental Health: How the Market Makes Us Sick

Libertarian Socialist Rants (2016)

Film Review

This 22 minute documentary makes an excellent case that capitalism is the primary cause of most mental illness.

The film begins by demonstrating that capitalist bosses have no incentive whatsoever to keep their workers healthy. Ideally they want their workers to be just healthy enough to do their work. From an employer’s perspective, any excess of health is wasteful and dangerous. Workers who are too healthy generally get restive when they’re forced to work for an abusive and exploitative boss.

In general, the most docile workers are those who are moderately depressed and apathetic. If people stop being depressed, they want to either 1) quit their jobs or 2) rebel.

The film also identifies housing difficulties (homelessness and insecure or poorly maintained housing) as a major cause of anxiety disorders and alcohol and drug addiction. Margaret Thatcher’s austerity policies led to a rampant heroin epidemic, as million of Brits lost jobs and/or secure housing.

The film goes on to cite a wealth of studies linking work and accommodation stress to anxiety and addiction disorders.