Bizarre State of Amused Horror: Corporations Taking Over for Government
A. Alexander, September 14th, 2007One bears witness in a bizarre state of amused horror. A few weeks ago, the New York Times reported that the former CEO of Citigroup had proudly insisted that corporations were taking over for the government. Sadly, he is correct. However, if he or anyone believes that corporations can deliver comparable services more efficiently and at less cost, they're delusional.
The belief that CEOs are geniuses and that corporations are the epitome of democratic values and fiscal prowess is as absurd as it is false. The myth, of course, is produced and propagated by corporations themselves. The illusion is reinforced by the likes of EXXON.
EXXON and big oil control the vast majority of the world's oil supply. Understanding that and realizing that neither the Bush administration, nor a bought-n-paid-for Congress would stand in their way, EXXON et al. tripled the price of gasoline -- blaming it on so-called global insecurity -- and started raking in annual profits that exceed $30 billion. That's business genius, right? That's oh-so efficient, right? Wrong!
What EXXON and its friends in big oil have done is nothing short of robbery and extortion. They control the market; they know they control the market; they know the consumer is helpless; they know the consumer needs gasoline just to get to work -- in order to access their very livelihood -- so EXXON uses that leverage to take money from the helpless and the hopeless.
How exactly, is what EXXON and big oil are doing to be considered genius, democratic, or a model of fiscal efficiency?
What about the "genius" CEO who, misjudging the value and demand for his or her product, builds new plants and hires thousands of new workers ... then, when the product fails miserably, "fixes" his or her incompetence by closing plants and firing workers? Sure, the closing and cutting maintains profit margins, but how much talent does that sort of behavior require and how is that "efficient"?
Wouldn't it be nice, if real life was that easy? Say a father loses his job. He and the wife can no longer afford to keep the nice new house and the kid too, so they decide to cut costs by getting rid of the kid. Wow! Isn't that genius? How efficient is that?
Let's not forget, too, that few country's corporations are more heavily subsidized by the government, than are America's corporations. If profits shrink, corporations pour money into Washington and basically rewrite the tax-code to their greater advantage...which is a slick way of funneling working Americans' tax dollars into corporate coffers.
Nobody is saying corporations are evil, but people shouldn't buy into the myth that corporations are efficient, fiscally responsible, democratic, and populated with geniuses. What's more ... for the few thousand dollars that the average person pays in taxes, they get a great return.
In return for the tax-dollar paid by citizens, they receive an education for their kids; they get roads; the taxpayer receives police and fire protection; they get military security; they get national parks; the taxpaying citizens receive safe drinking water; they get clean air, they get retirement security ... and a host of other services. If anyone believes corporations either would or could deliver those services at a lower cost and more efficiently, they're sadly delusional.
Besides, when was the last time your company's CEO asked for your opinion? Corporations are not democratic. Corporations aren't necessarily efficient. Corporations are often fiscally irresponsible -- think sub-prime crisis. And, corporations are rarely the home to genius. Government isn't perfect, but it certainly outperforms most corporations. Still, one watches in a bizarre state of amused horror as more and more people buy into the myth that is being sold by the likes of Citigroup's former CEO.
(In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, this material is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. I.U. has no affiliation whatsoever with the originator of this article nor is I.U endorsed or sponsored by the originator.)
The Nazis, Fascists and Communists were political parties before they became enemies of liberty and mass murderers.