2016 Campaign’s Populist Tone Rankles America’s CEOs … Chief executives at big American companies are increasingly frustrated by the populist tone of the presidential campaign, and concerns are mounting in boardrooms and corner offices that anti-business rhetoric may solidify even after the November election. – Wall Street Journal
This Wall Street Journal article makes the point that Trump has positioned himself at the head of an increasingly anti-business GOP.
The GOP “has been captured by a large number of people who basically do not like big,” said Judd Gregg, a Republican former U.S. senator and governor of New Hampshire, who sits on the board of Honeywell International Inc.
By default, there’s nothing wrong with “big.” Theoretically, big business can mean economies of scale and economic efficiency. The oversized corporations of the US, however, are not natural products of the market. Instead, they are the artificial results of government policy.
As we’ve often pointed out, there are three areas where judicial force has been applied, swelling corporations to titanic sizes.
The first is intellectual property rights.
If corporations had to protect their own trade secrets rather than relying on government to do it for them, it is very probable that many corporations would be a good deal smaller.
The second is corporate personhood.
Corporate personhood makes it a good deal easier for individuals to avoid culpability for corporate acts.
Those lodged within a corporation can often avoid penalties that would otherwise expose them to significant personal jeopardy. Because they stay in charge, continuity isn’t disrupted and exceptionally aggressive corporate strategies can be maintained.
The third area is monopoly central banking.
Monopoly fiat money benefits the world’s largest corporations inordinately. The money coming out of central banks, especially Western central banks, often finds its way to the largest multinationals first, providing significant liquidity to these massive entities.
There are other ways that “big business” is artificially supported and propped up in the West, but these seem to be the most significant.
To claim that the current US “populist” environment is anti-big business is to radically misconstrue the reality of American capitalism.
American capitalism has very little about it that is laissez-faire.
US judicial decisions have created an environment in which gigantic corporations can flourish.
Thomas Jefferson and other founders were so worried about corporate bigness that corporate creation was lodged at the state rather than the federal level.
It was only after the Civil War that judicial decisions began to lay the groundwork for the modern corporate state.
The modern corporate state is almost antithetical to the agrarian republicanism that Jefferson and others had envisioned – a free-market republicanism that was responsible for initial US growth.
This Wall Street Journal radically misrepresents the reality of business in the US and throughout the West.
Rhetoric from Republican candidates has grown more populist and less friendly to big business than at any time in decades, while the Democratic race is being influenced by the rise of liberal Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders.
Some of these instincts gave rise to the tea-party movement in 2009 and sent dozens of more conservative lawmakers to Washington the following year, fueling gridlock on Capitol Hill.
In the past, The Daily Bell has very clearly identified Tea Party sentiments with an underlying free-market instinct present in the US since its founding.
In fact, this sentiment was present in the US long before the Constitution.
Instinctively, people know that “big business” does not present a competitive, free-market profile.
The US and the West generally have developed a system more aptly characterized as “corporatism.”
Entrepreneurialism continues to diminish in the US. Regulations, taxes and the underlying judicial support for larger corporations are making it increasingly difficult for people to make even a modest living.
A recent article over at Infowars, entitled, “Authorities Fear Civil Unrest, Buy Up Gear To Arrest, Disperse, Control Riots,” reported on the growing popular frustration with the direction of US society.
Riot control systems are expected to “generate revenues of over USD 3.5 billion by the end of 2020,” with North America being one of the primary growth areas for upgraded weapons due to “militarization of the police department and other law enforcement agencies.”
The article also mentioned recent comments bytop insurer Lloyds in a report warning of a “pandemic of global civil unrest that could go viral, threatening international stability.”
Market-based economies generate entrepreneurial republicanism – a system that encourages both freedom and prosperity.
The US’s “Fortune 500” approach to “big business,” encourages the mingling of government power with titanic private interests. Over time, this trend creates corporatism, which can also be described as fascism.
The inter-locking, anti-freedom environment of modern Western society is generating increasing push-back for a number of reasons. It’s not a trend that will likely diminish.
Conclusion: As always, we encourage independence – a “prepper” mentality – focused on personal preparedness. What happens to the larger society is beyond your control, but you can have an impact on your own personal environment. And you should.