Sunday, June 15, 2014

the Failure of Economic Libertarianism

I pledge allegiance of the multi-national corporation
And to the profit, for which they stand
One interlocking Directorate, under NO government, indivisible.
With monopoly and cheap labor for All.
                              -U.Utah Phillips-

     The main difference between myself,and other libertarians is in the realm of economics.  This is partially due to my upbringing, and also my studies of history and the social sciences.  You see, while I generally agree with them that our nation needs laws that support small businesses, encourage innovation and entrepreneurial endeavors, and don't place too many roadblocks or onerous regulations in the way of those important economic activities... I strongly disagree with the lengths most libertarians are willing to go.

You see, I have NO desire to return our great nation to the Gilded Age.  To me, that would be an enormously bad idea.  However, that is what economic libertarianism leads to.  In fact, I believe that we are quite a ways down that particular path already, with"right to work(for less) laws, the fight against the minimum wage, and income inequality

Libertarians have some valid concerns regarding regulations and the law's interference with small businesses, however, in MY mind, much of that isn't due to well meaning(but sometimes nutty) liberals, but to BIG businesses intentionally perverting the law to stymie competition.  It is in the corporations best interest to limit the market share of competitors

Take the meat packing laws ( Meat_Inspection_Act at Wikipedia )  This was a important bit of legislation, aimed at ensuring a safe and healthy food supply for the American people.  These days, through shrinking budgets for inspectors, and laws upon regulations upon other laws, federal,state, and local... these laws oftentimes serve as protections for the big guys, to the detriment of small farmers and local communities
Michigan turns small farmers into felons
organic farmers fight against Monsanto

When, as is somewhat true today, the government becomes a tool of big business, society, as a whole, suffers.  However, lazzais faire economics would allow either a complete return to the 19th century of child labor, dangerous worksites, and no worker protection... Or a complete take over of government by business...neither option being in the best interest of the nation, or society.

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