I recently had an interesting discussion with a neighbor down the way on Marlborough Avenue. Among other things, we discussed the Koch brothers Commie ties—seems a grandfather(?) of theirs did active business with the Soviet Union during the 1930s (according to what the neighbor claimed, anyway). Plus Rupert Murdoch and his ventures into monopoly. Fact, he owns 75% of the news media in Australia. Oh, yes, that’s right; the biggest threat to capitalism isn’t a totalitarian state. Even if that is the one argument the GOP would like to trot out the most. The biggest threat to capitalism happens to be monopolies. Capitalism is all about competition that gives consumers a choice about the products and services they wish to buy. Or, for that matter, whom they choose to buy it from. Monopolies are totalitarian in nature. It isn’t only a question of tremendous wealth concentrated in a few hands. It isn’t only whether Joe Sixpack gets to work at the monopolist sweat shop or that Chi Long Li will do so instead. It is telling consumers that the car they buy, the newspaper they buy, etc. is going to be determined by some super rich guys out of New York City (as an example). Precisely, what features the car will have (nor will the prospective customer have any other choice in the matter); or what content the newspaper will carry. Again, the customer doesn’t actually get a choice.
So what, you may claim. This is the private sector! The captains of industry can do what ever they want and the government simply shouldn’t interfere! I hate to have to break it to any of my readers, but the monopolist minded captains of industry very much want government interference. As long as government can be there to subsidize their endeavors, protect them from unwelcome competition through regulation or legislation that falls more heavily on that potential competition. The only time these “captains of industry” might do some screaming about government interference, is when government acts on behalf of the customers—when it comes to shoddy products and services. The labor force—who want to actually get paidsomething for the work they do, plus health care, days off, pensions, and vacations as well. Or the neighbors—who maybe do not want to get very sick or die from toxic pollution.
Then this is something to think about, when Teddy Roosevelt put the kibosh on the corruption of monopolies based on what the leaders of these monopolies were doing to buy politicians. They were called, “anti-trust” laws. Until the anti-trust legislation was signed into law, this country was actually not a capitalist system. Only after the anti-trust laws had truly begun to take effect, could capitalism truly come into its own. Through Roosevelt, government restrained monopolist endeavors. This singular act actually brought more freedom to the marketplace as more businesses could start up and flourish. So, if the GOP want to tout a “free market” today, they need to remember that it takes laws, rules, and regulations to make one possible. Without them, you can have a literal anarchy that can decimate the “capitalism” you say you want to protect. As well as a nation that bases its economic system on that concept. Something that very much proved true by 2007-2008.
I told my neighbor about what Conservative actually had to mean for it to have any value as a label. I.E. a conservative is a person who operates first from a moral perspective. From that moral basis, determines what he or she would value, and preserve at all costs. If a free market is valued, then corrupting politicians to write legislation in favor of monopolies, would run counter to the idea of the free market. If capitalism is valued: then to make a business climate possible requires investors, lenders, entrepreneurs, workers, and yes; customers. Then corrupting politicians to write favorable legislation on the behalf of a business interest wealthy and large enough to afford such an act, would only undermine the concept of what capitalism would be about. Considering that money is the driving influence behind politics today, where those with the most of the money are considered to have the most influence in the public arena. If what I say in defense of capitalism can be called “leftist;” then capitalism is itself a leftist concept.
The GOP can’t actually fault President Obama for being “anti-capitalist” or anti-commercial enterprise. President Obama through the majority of his tenure at the White House has tried to recreate a business climate in this nation. Especially one that would take people off the unemployment rolls and return them to becoming productive, taxpaying citizens. Why would anyone want to be opposed to that? unless you are a radical member of the GOP (TEA Party, anyone?) who just happens to be blinded by money, ideology, and hatred for the fact that a Democrat ran for this office, twice, and won. There is not much of a moral underpinning to the above statement if your neighbors matter less than money, ideology, and hatred of President Obama. Or, in the case of politicians (GOP in particular), Grover Norquist, Rush Limbaugh, the deep pockets of the Koch brothers matter more than the constituents who actually voted for them. How do you proclaim a moral underpinning under the above circumstances in order to even be regarded as a “conservative” or “right wing?” Money is the driving influence, then the only label that can actually apply: is corruption. From the position of corruption, nothing is valued and therefore, nothing is preserved. Neither, free markets, families, nor the U.S. Constitution itself.
It is time that we saw a resurgence of honesty here in this country. That our politicians of any stripe put aside blatant hypocrisy. If Rupert Murdoch wants to argue that retaliatory acts against his monopolist enterprise ought to be labeled “anti-capitalist.” No, those retaliatory actions are in opposition to the abuse and corruption brought about by his monopoly in the news media business. There is a difference between capitalism and monopolism. The latter in particular I am sure Murdoch (or others of his ilk) wouldn’t mind having government underwrite. Capitalism actually doesn’t need government to underwrite it; just the laws and regs that enable it to exist and flourish. So, think about this, my readers. Without money could you buy a home, furnishings for that home, food for yourself and family, clothing and education for your children, health care, etc.? Of course not. If capitalism is the conduit for that money, and it is, then monopolies are counter productive to everything about the American way of life.