American capitalism is different: It encompasses "creation of wealth" through free enterprise and "reconstitution of wealth" through philanthropy.
"Ronnie J. Phillips is an economics professor at Colorado State University and an expert in entrepreneurial economics. His take on economics shows in a recent opinion piece that categorizes philanthropy as 'the backbone of American capitalism.' In his new op-ed, Phillips suggests that 'Spending and giving stem from very different motives, yet both are crucial to maintaining the vitality of a capitalist economy.' He writes that in addition to entrepreneurial activity, 'the other essential component of American economic, political and social stability is philanthropy—that is, distribution of wealth.' In other words, philanthropic altruism isn’t standing in contrast to capitalist self-interest, but altruism, like self-interest, contributes to the creation of opportunity and progress. The excess returns of self-interest that create immense wealth flow into philanthropy, which creates opportunities for future generations." -- Rick Cohen, the Nonprofit Quarterly