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What Can Corporations Do To Us?

Written by | May 19th, 2012

Quite often, we hear from people in our country that, big business, and corporations, are running our Government; and by extension, our country. But, how can that be? For example, Corporations do not have the power to make laws; they do not have the power to send us to jail; they do not have the power to vote away our income; they do not have the power to wage war etc.

Government, on the other hand, does have the power to make laws; they do have the power to use force, and to send us to jail; they do have the confiscatory powers to vote away our income; and, they do have the power to wage war.

Government, even when exercising their most basic of functions, is widely considered, a necessary evil; as they produce nothing. All of the money needed to run our Governments, must first be taxed away from the earnings of our citizenry. Corporations, on the other hand, create wealth, they create jobs, and they produce products that are of real value to people – such as energy, food, clothing, homes etc.

The above examples, alone, demonstrate, clearly, that, while Government is necessary, Corporations, in the normal course of the day, bring far more value to people’s lives then Government. So, why then, does there appear to be so much dislike for Corporations, from some people in this country? I believe the answer to that question is precisely for the aforementioned reasons. In other words, Corporations are so valuable, and do create so much wealth, that, many people believe, by default, that Government automatically bows down to these Corporations, and their CEOs. But again, let’s recall, who has the power to make laws, to send people to jail, and to vote away our money?

I’m afraid that, for the most part, too many people are putting the cart before the horse: If Government has the power to make laws, then the logical conclusion is that, Corporations, for the most part, and if they want to operate in a certain jurisdiction, are forced to adhere to the laws, and regulations, created by the respective Government. However, if Corporations decide to leave that location, and relocate elsewhere, then Government officials need to answer to their constituents, as to why Corporations are leaving, and with them, taking wealth, jobs, and opportunities – which, may be enough for any politician to lose their job over.

Once upon a time, in our country, Government had very little involvement with the private sector economy, and basically, stuck to their core Government functions; while companies did what they were best at, which was creating a marketable product, and hiring the necessary help, to bring that product to market. And, as a result of this mutual respect between the public and private sectors, The United States became the wealthiest country in the history of the world. Once Government began to incessantly regulate private companies, it only stands to reason that, companies would have to find a way to maintain their livelihoods, and keep the Government off their backs; and, the logical way to do that, would be to buy influence from within the Government. Or, stated differently, to bribe or buy-off the law-makers. 

It is these so-called public/private sector partnerships, that have led to this current quasi-Fascist system in our country, that we more subtlety refer to as Corporatism, Crony Capitalism etc. But, this, however, is not the system that was intended by our Founders. Citizens from both the left and the right, Republicans, Democrats, and Libertarians alike, all seem to share a common dislike for these sort of partnerships, which does corrupt our Government; and, at the same time, does hurt and disrupt productivity – and competition, for companies who have little or no influence with the law-makers. 

Since we would all agree, for the most part, that we do need Government, and we do need Corporations, the question then becomes, how can we end these highly unethical, and highly unproductive partnerships? The best answer that I can think of, regardless of how much people may disagree, is to have a complete wall of separation between Government, and Private Sector Companies. Or, at the very least, allow all Government regulations to be handled locally, where communities, and companies, are affected the most; which would allow the local citizenry to deal with their respective Governments, and to empower them, locally, with the things that impact the normal course of their daily lives. 

In the end, and, in a truly free-market, absent of incessant Government influence, We, The People, and our wallets, are really the best regulators of all. Unlike government, who can vote away our money, Corporations have to convince us to spend our money; which, in my humble opinion, gives us, the consumers, far more power, and far more influence, then any Corporation, in a truly free-market, could ever dream of.

Further Reading:
The Commonly Accepted Theory About Fascism
Who Are The Real Enemies of Capitalism?

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3 thoughts on “What Can Corporations Do To Us?

  1. markross Post author

    “When buying and selling are controlled by legislation, the first things bought and sold are legislators.” – P.J. O’Rourke

  2. Jackie Durkee

    Great article! I agree that corporations and government should be totally separate. And there should NEVER be a corporation “too big to fail”. If they can’t sustain a good enough profit, then they should go bankrupt. Newer better corporation will take their place.


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