Economics/Class Relations

Do Big Corporations Control America?

Contrary to the claims of this vulgar libertarian piece, yes, they do.

This article is a reminder of why libertarians need a better to economics than Ayn Rand’s recycling of Social Darwinism.

“A key claim of the partisans of this view–who originally called themselves Progressives–is that large corporations not only dominate capitalist society economically, essentially abolishing market competition, but also dominate the political system. So most, if not all legislation, serves the wealthy corporate interests. Karl Marx may have originated this argument, but to this day, shorn of its Marxist metaphysics, it is the majority perspective among the intellectual and political classes in America. Even many conservatives, and a few libertarians, adhere to this perspective.”

In other words, corporate dominance of the state is recognized by all serious political scientists and economists, except those who are Randian lunatics.

“Since about 1980, however, the ideological and political grip of statism has begun to loosen. Statist policies of regulation and income redistribution have visibly failed. Slowly, some of the statist fetters have been lifted from the economy, allowing entrepreneurship and economic growth to continue.”

The author of that piece fails to point out that “since about 1980” has been precisely the time that the US had degenerated into a Third World plutocracy and semi-fascist police state.

By James Rolph Edwards

Foundation for Economic Education

Since the mid-eighteenth century the development of market-based societies in America and elsewhere, with constitutional protections of property and freedom, has had startling effects. Well over 90 percent of the improvement in the material living standards of ordinary persons that has occurred in the 6,000 years of recorded human history has occurred in that last 250 years and in those nations. Mean life expectancy in the United States rose from 35 years in 1800 to 50 in 1900, and around 76 in 2000. Famine in such nations disappeared and many diseases were conquered. All this resulted from replacing the caste and status relationships of medieval society with contract relationships between mutually consenting adults, while restricting the power of government to enforcing contracts, providing national defense, preventing crime, and a few other basic functions.

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