While many may feel big government is the boogieman threatening to take away our freedoms, I worry that big business is the greater threat. Their money makes for a loud voice, and when they decide to buy speech, little seems to stop them. Unlike a government which is bound by borders, they are international citizens purchasing and often dictating policies throughout the world. They speak to an international crowd. Their voices drown out reason. Their products seduce us in to acceptance or denial. They become our masters.
Okay, I really don’t think capitalistic doom awaits us around the corner, but it cannot be denied how corporate influence is at the heart of many of the economic ills plaguing us today. It makes me wonder, how many of the attacks on the US government, or other national governments, are being paid for by corporations who love deflecting attention from their own role in our economic woes?
Accountability should be shared, but in a world where speech can be purchased by the highest bidder, it is far easier to buy out the market, to sell a pretty package, or promise a miraculous future rather than to acknowledge responsibility for risky mistakes and ventures.
While governments must try to care for their people, corporations are not bound by the same constraints. It is easy to find examples of harmful or wasteful products being sold to the masses. The boogieman is artful in his disguise and sells an enticing product, but beneath all the glamour, sparkle, and loud noise, the big business is focused only on one thing – profit. People become expendable resources on a spreadsheet of greed.
These ponderings I share have been meandering through my brain for a while, but an article concerning Olympic marketing brought them to the forefront today. While much attention is directed at “draconian” governmental control, the underlying boogieman is the corporate sponsors who do not want even grandma to stitch the Olympic rings on a sweater, or junior to wear a competitor’s t-shirt.
Maybe this is why corporations are considered people by so many wealthy leaders. If the corporations are not people, then governments no longer can say they serve the people.
So who is the boogieman, and who is stirring up the pitchfork wielding crowd? I will let you decide, for now I must return to playing with my techie toys, and eating my yummy junk food all while I get ready to watch the Olympics this weekend.
I partially agree. The corporations are part of the problem, but only because of government. If the government wasn’t able to pass rules and regulations that give the corporations their power, we wouldn’t have these problems. Corporations are basically granted monopolies through regulations they lobby the government to pass, allowing them to do as they wish since there can be no competition.
Interestingly enough, I was just discussing the power corporations have in influencing governmental policies. I think most people understand that governmental entities, whether it be an individual in congress or a bureaucratic department, do not exist in a protected bubble. They are bombarded, coerced, persuaded, and occasionally even bribed. Sometimes the lobbying pressure benefits large groups of people, sometimes it does not. What I believe the public often forgets is that this connection between government and corporate power is not new. It goes back to the very beginnings of the nation.
Just the other day I read an article reminding me that a certain prominent founding father was very disgruntled with King George III’s policy on western expansion. Closing off the border was costing him money; the money he invested in land speculation deals contingent on westward expansion. A desire to make money is not necessarily an evil, but it can easily overshadow other interests. It can easily become an evil when unchecked.
The intent of my posting, is to remind of the other boogieman in the room, or if not a boogieman, to point out the man selling the pitchforks as he stirs up the crowd. In good times government and corporations are fairy godmothers with magic wands. In bad times they are boogiemen under the bed.
Thanks for taking a moment to comment. 🙂
Your post does a good job of that 🙂
Thank you. 🙂