It might come as a surprise that the world’s first capitalist was a poet. In the 8th Century BC, Hesiod highlighted two kinds of strife: one that drives people to war and cruelty, and another that inspires people to compete and work for a better life.

This good kind of strife drives the U.S. economy, too. When people compete fairly, they create better products, do better work, come up with better ideas.

Whether in their proto-market economy, in their athletic contests like the ancient Olympics, or in their intellectual sparring matches, the virtues of the good competition were on full display for everyone to see in ancient Greece.

Perhaps they realized reminders of the good strife, and what it is, are important especially, when the dark side of capitalism can lead to inequality.

Video courtesy of The National Hellenic Society.