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Big Government

Making capitalism out of socialism is like making eggs out of an omelet.
- Vadim Bakatin

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Varying Verity - Truth never changes, only our understanding into what it is . . .

Essence

The Axis of the Corporate/State

by SARTRE

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Big Government makes Big Business possible

Big Business has a sweetheart deal with their lover - Big Government. If you think that there is any divergence between the two, you are missing the nature of the relationship. They both need each other and they relish in the growth of the other. Contrary to the Marxist, 21st century economies have little to do with the workers or even the owners of the company equity. It has everything to do with the felicitous bond between the controllers of wealth and of men, that allows them to ignore the rest of us.

When corporate decisions are made that solely benefit those who direct the management, we call it greed. But when government influence peddlers oversee administrations that increase and protect their own ability to shape policy, we call it democracy. The corporate monopoly produces the fuel, while the State burns it in their machinery of organization. That establishment for government insulates and defends their friends and reduces their foes to second class status. How does this magic act work?

Anyone who has experience with the process of passing legislation, knows all too well the technique of grinding sausage. The common practice of accepting lobbyists as drafting agents for bills is legendary. The staff of an elected official operate as a facilitator for their corporate constituents and contributors. Their legal council refines the complexity to bury the real intent of the legislation. And the politicians swap favors and twist arms of their colleagues for the votes and smiles at the announcement ceremony.

The executive comes to power through the test of loyalty to those who direct the money machine and the politicos who's purpose is to preserve the racket. The bureaucracy is designed to regulate the process and eliminate those who have not paid the entry fee. Civil servants have the role to enforce the standards of the club and to create difficulty for those who want to buck the system. The President promotes and implements the protection scheme domestically and throughout the world.

The courts upholds the legitimacy of the proceedings as the lawful system. Their privilege is vested in the guardianship of the powers that make up the rules, and place them in black robes. Cracks in the legislative and regulatory operations are sealed with the decrees of the judge. Directions that cannot be achieved through statutes, codes and fines can be ordained from the bench. The partnership in the firm of Capital - Command - Court, PA has their own agenda, and it serve only their interests.

Now consider what happens when this governmental culture meets the monopolists? Their interests often are the same. Elimination of business competition allows for consolidation and dominance of the economy. Growth in big government expands control over the entire society. Both have the goal of dictating to the public. Setting prices and discouraging upstarts benefits corporate commerce, all the time with the blessing of the State. The government enlarges their roles and intensifies their regulation of business, while favoring their cabal collaborators and contributors. Power shifts from a diffused economic base and the consumer is served up as the main course on the dinner table of the manipulation feast.

If you are honest with yourself, you will agree, it isn't any more complicated than this summary.

One needs to accept that solutions run counter to the interests of this unholy alliance. Manufactured crisis produces controlled chaos, that requires government answers. Those answers always push the limits of constitutional restraints and diminishes your individual rights. The State rewards their corporate favorites with luscious government contracts and guaranteed cost overruns. A lovely pact if you can get it . . . !!!

Well, they have it and we keep getting it - that is, the short end of the stick. It is greased with FDA approved lubricant, inserted under OSHA supervision and accounted for by GAO audits. All the time we pay for the experience. Don't forget that corporations never pay taxes, only their customers.

The big picture gets blurred when you are running in circles to get through another day of earning enough money to pay your obligations. Can anyone deny that this system is based upon fabricating and protecting the advantage of a privileged elite - of the Corporate/State axis? None of this should be surprising or new. But how many folks willingly contribute and pay tribute to this protection racket? Obviously, most people do . . . But this fact does not nullify the corruption within the system or the depraved nature of the illicit relationship. The Corporate/State marriage spawns deformed offspring. Their children are creatures of inbred incest. They are demented, deranged and dangerous to your health.

Curing this sickness from this impious union demands that we start with the proverb "Physician, heal thyself" - Luke 4:23. We are the doctors and the axis is the disease. The scourge needs to be eradicated, cut off this coupling of crime. Break up the cartel.

Complement

Give us more, more, more!
by George F. Smith

California and its governor are in the news again, this time about Oracle's no-bid deal with the state that could cost taxpayers over $40 million more than expected.  It looks bad for Governor Davis, who took $25,000 from the computer company to help his re-election.  [1]

Oracle's CEO, you will recall, volunteered to design a national ID card system for us, so we'd be safe from everyone except the government.  The government, of course, would administer the system without abuse, excessive costs, or foul-ups.  This is the same government that routinely demands tributes from lobbyists in exchange for deals like Oracle's.  The same government that has made air travel safer by frisking Al Gore and random grandmothers, while prohibiting pilots from exercising their Second Amendment rights.  The very government that couldn't protect us on a $2.1 trillion budget and still can't today, by their own admission.  A government with an agency that continues to issue visas to dead terrorists, that conducts war without declaring it, that has killed a lot of people since 9-11 except the ones who masterminded it, that rewards itself for failure by giving us more of what caused it.

Every election government asks if we want more of the same, and we tell it yes.  What we get is by design, not by accident.  Big Government is an expression of popular will, not the subterfuge of low-lifes.  Even now, with soaring government incompetence, 80 percent of the people are eager to swap freedom for perceived security, according to a recent USA Today Gallup Poll. [2]

In his book, "Crisis and Leviathan," Robert Higgs says crisis and the proper "ideological climate" ratchet the growth of government.  [3]  The right climate has been guaranteed by our government-controlled education system. When a crisis strikes, the people expect the government to "do something." The something it does is grab power.  It smothers us with new or enlarged bureaucracies, redefines the Constitution, issues statutory constraints on economic activities, conscripts, raises taxes, seizes property, nationalizes industries, and praises citizens who agree with its policies as "patriots," while sometimes imprisoning without trial suspects or outspoken dissenters. It keeps doing this until the crisis passes, then it surrenders the power it seized -- but only part of it.  Government never retrenches to the precrisis state.

Historian Jeffrey Rogers Hummel cites the Civil War as the great turning point for federal growth.  "In the years [following the Civil War], coercive authority would wax and wane with year-to-year circumstances, but the long-term trend would be unmistakable.  Henceforth there would be no more major victories of Liberty over Power."  [4]

Government at all levels had been decreasing in power up until the 1850s. "The United States, already one of the most prosperous and influential countries on the face of the earth, had practically the smallest, weakest State apparatus," Hummel writes.  [5]  Lincoln and his assault on the South changed all that.

During and following the war, the federal government corrupted business entrepreneurship through subsidies, tariffs, land grants, and special privileges to business cronies.  We can see this clearly in the building of the transcontinental railroads.  By giving the Union Pacific and Central Pacific railroads free land and cash loans for each mile of track they completed, the government created incentives for shoddy construction.  "The two lines spent little time choosing routes; they just laid track and cashed in," Burton Folsom notes.  [6]  To get more cash, they often built circuitous roads.  They even laid track in winter on ice and snow, that had to be rebuilt in spring.

The UP and CP received 44 million acres of free land and over $61 million in cash loans.  When they completed the transcontinental railroad in 1869, both were almost bankrupt.  Because of their poor construction and wasteful routes, both roads had high fixed costs that customers had to bear.

By contrast, James J. Hill built the Great Northern railroad without any government aid and ran it at a profit.  He built slowly and helped develop the areas where he was laying track.  For instance, he imported 7,000 cattle and gave them free of charge to settlers near his line.  He used durable materials and chose his routes carefully, seeking short distances, low grades, and minimum curvatures.

In 1893, the UP and CP went bankrupt, while Hill cut his costs another 13 percent from 1894 - 1895.  [7]

In short, government aid attracted predators; predators bred inefficiency; inefficiency created consumer wrath; consumer wrath led to government regulation.  [8]  But government regulation applied to all railroads, Hill's included.

Government meddling in other industries produced similar results.  The guilt of some spread to all, and most people failed to distinguish between wealth-builders and crooks.  The myth was established: Big Business was corrupt.  The demand for government regulation of the economy peaked in the era known as "Progressive."

We pay a price by not studying history more critically.  Enron, Oracle, and 9-11 itself could have been avoided.

References

1.  GOP Lawmaker accuses Oracle of payoffs, 2.  The dangers of physical safety, Alan Keyes

3.  Higgs, Robert, Crisis and Leviathan: critical episodes in the growth of American government, Oxford University Press, 1987.

4.  Hummel, Jeffrey Rogers, Emancipating Slaves, Enslaving Free Men: A history of the American Civil War, Open Court, 1996, p. 359.

5.  Ibid, p. 350

6.  Folsom, Burton, The Myth of the Robber Barons: A new look at the rise of big business in America, Young America's Foundation, Herdon, VA, 1996, p. 18.

7.  Ibid, p. 29

8.  Ibid, p. 22

 
The truth is always the strongest argument
Sophocles

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