The 29-year-old, first-term U.S. House member from New York and self-described democratic socialist addressed an enthusiastic crowd Saturday at the South by Southwest conference in Austin about issues that resonate with her fellow millennials, from universal health care to combating climate change.
She directed some of her sharpest comments at an economic system that she said values profit over people.
“Capitalism is an ideology of capital — the most important thing is the concentration of capital and to seek and maximize profit,” Ocasio-Cortez said. And that comes at any cost to people and to the environment, she said, “so to me capitalism is irredeemable.”
Although she said she doesn’t think all parts of capitalism should be abandoned, “we’re reckoning with the consequences of putting profit above everything else in society. And what that means is people can’t afford to live. For me, it’s a question of priorities and right now I don’t think our model is sustainable.”