Sunday, November 25, 2012

Previous Administrations Comment on Corporate Power

"Corporations, which should be the carefully restrained creatures of
the law and the servants of the people, are fast becoming the people’s
masters."— President Grover Cleveland

Cleveland was a limited-government Democrat when the Democracy following the Civil War sided with states'  rights and less federal intervention of the state. Unfortunately, part of the reason why the Democratic Party was "states' rights" was because of the "Solid South", which continued to advanced policies of white supremacy and de jure segregation.

"You know, the only trouble with capitalism is capitalists. They're too damn greedy. ― Herbert Hoover  

No, the real issue that corporate interests incorporate their greed with government greed, and both profit at the expense of the voters, the small businesses, and the country. Greed in a free market forces businesses to provide the best service at the best price in order to attract more customers. Without the profit motive, there would be no commerce in the first place. There would be no capitalism, and there would be no "greedy" capitalists, either.

The liberty of a democracy is not safe if the people tolerate the
growth of private power to a point where it becomes stronger than
their democratic state itself."
— Franklin D. Roosevelt

The only way that private power can become so powerful would be for the state to grant subsidies, exceptions, and favors to certain businesses at the expense of other firms which play fully by the rules of the free market.

"When I hear gentlemen say that politics
ought to let business alone, I feel like
inviting them to first consider whether
business is letting politics alone."
-- Woodrow Wilson

Wilson had no business slamming business interests for all that they were doing. As long as government refuses to upend the rules of the free market, then private firms will have no choice but to fail following the poor decisions and risky mistakes which they made.

If we want to keep business out of politics, then the voters have to limit the scope of politics in the first place. Progressives like Wilson, and before him Teddy Roosevelt, had no interest in keeping

"The selfish spirit of commerce ... knows no country, and feels no
passion or principle but that of gain."
-Thomas Jefferson (1743-1826)

"Greed" has become a huge catch-all for anyone who wants to make money. At this rate, why not punish all of the government employees and unions which go on strike for higher wages and better benefits? Is that not a form of greed, as well?

Thomas Jefferson had no business criticizing gain, anyway. He owned a large plantation with slaves, workers whom he refused to pay - who was the one under the bondage of the "selfish spirit of commerce" indeed?

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