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Old 2013-02-22, 13:25   Link #221
GundamFan0083
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willx View Post
I love Corporations. Why are you guys so suspicious? Has one touched you somewhere inappropriately?

Oh geez.
That reminds me of this image:



Corporations have more impact on US politics these days than do the citizenry, and that hasn't changed under Obama, and clearly would have been the same under Romney.

I'll take Adam Smith's view on coporations.

The trade of a joint stock company is always managed by a court of directors. This court, indeed, is frequently subject, in many respects, to the control of a general court of proprietors. But the greater part of those proprietors seldom pretend to understand anything of the business of the company, and when the spirit of faction happens not to prevail among them, give themselves no trouble about it, but receive contentedly such half-yearly or yearly dividend as the directors think proper to make to them. This total exemption from trouble and from risk, beyond a limited sum, encourages many people to become adventurers in joint stock companies, who would, upon no account, hazard their fortunes in any private copartnery. Such companies, therefore, commonly draw to themselves much greater stocks than any private copartnery can boast of. The trading stock of the South Sea Company, at one time, amounted to upwards of thirty-three millions eight hundred thousand pounds.*65 The divided capital of the Bank of England amounts, at present, to ten millions seven hundred and eighty thousand pounds.*66 The directors of such companies, however, being the managers rather of other peopleís money than of their own, it cannot well be expected that they should watch over it with the same anxious vigilance with which the partners in a private copartnery frequently watch over their own. Like the stewards of a rich man, they are apt to consider attention to small matters as not for their masterís honour, and very easily give themselves a dispensation from having it. Negligence and profusion, therefore, must always prevail, more or less, in the management of the affairs of such a company.

Like Noam Chomski, I too do not view what is called "Capitalism" today as actual capitalism.
It's corporatism.
And like Noam, I am diametrically opposed to Corporatism, for obvious reasons.
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Old 2013-02-22, 13:46   Link #222
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Gundam, after Vexx-jisan and me, you are the third one to bring up modern capitalism != corporatism.

That makes three of us.
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Old 2013-02-22, 14:26   Link #223
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Originally Posted by SaintessHeart View Post
Gundam, after Vexx-jisan and me, you are the third one to bring up modern capitalism != corporatism.

That makes three of us.
And you're all socialist! Nay, communists! *rabble rabble*

All kidding aside, I'm not a believer in corporate person-hood, that said I do believe in economies of scale and scope and also market tests for efficiency. I also believe in the existence of public goods. Adam Smith also understood all of this as well. Contrary to popular belief, Adam Smith believed in a role for government in the economy, and it was an important one.

Where I disagree with many people, particularly people on this forum, is about the role of government. Government is supposed to be the shepherd that watches out for the public interest and provides for "public goods." It's supposedly their job. The U.S. is massive population-wise, sprawling geographically and incredibly diverse.. I actually feel like there is not enough government oversight over many areas (albeit I think there is a lot of waste and pointless government oversight in others) -- problem is there is also a lot of anti-government sentiment and of course the age old question of Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? -- "Who keeps the keepers?"
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Old 2013-02-22, 14:28   Link #224
Vallen Chaos Valiant
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The government can get voted out of office by the population. CEOs cannot.

So there is more oversight over the government than the all-powerful corporations.
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Old 2013-02-22, 15:29   Link #225
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Originally Posted by willx View Post
and of course the age old question of Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? -- "Who keeps the keepers?"
Rorschach.
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Old 2013-02-22, 15:53   Link #226
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Corporatism is not free market, simply because it requires government intervention to make it happen. They are artificially using the government to "cheat" and create the worst kind of monopoly-- a state sponsored one. With a strong enough monopoly and government stamping out alternatives, this is frequently no better than oppression in many cases.

This is yet another example of neocon hypocrisy, and this one in particular is awful. At least the Democrats are upfront about their lack of regard for economic freedom or responsible spending.
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Old 2013-02-22, 15:54   Link #227
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Originally Posted by Vallen Chaos Valiant View Post
The government can get voted out of office by the population. CEOs cannot.

So there is more oversight over the government than the all-powerful corporations.
How about a democratic workplace?
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Old 2013-02-22, 16:04   Link #228
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Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
How about a democratic workplace?
Only if all the employees are equal shareholders.
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Old 2013-02-22, 17:14   Link #229
mangamuscle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willx View Post
the age old question of Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? -- "Who keeps the keepers?"
The digital age has brought a solution to this ages old dilemma, thru the internet it is nowadays feasible for everyone to have instant access to ALL the information any government produces as it supposedly does what it is supposed to do. Albeit very few governments publish said information on the internet using excuses like "national security". They day all such information is public there will be no way to hide any wrong doing because everybody can check if everything adds out, "Trust in verify" as Ronald Reagan used to say.
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Old 2013-02-22, 17:18   Link #230
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archon_Wing View Post
Corporatism is not free market, simply because it requires government intervention to make it happen. They are artificially using the government to "cheat" and create the worst kind of monopoly-- a state sponsored one. With a strong enough monopoly and government stamping out alternatives, this is frequently no better than oppression in many cases.

This is yet another example of neocon hypocrisy, and this one in particular is awful. At least the Democrats are upfront about their lack of regard for economic freedom or responsible spending.
South Korea in the 1980s. And look what happened in the Asian Financial Crisis.

At least those chaebols learnt some sort of lesson with regards to duty to society. Not sure about the Western ones.

Quote:
Originally Posted by willx View Post
And you're all socialist! Nay, communists! *rabble rabble*

All kidding aside, I'm not a believer in corporate person-hood, that said I do believe in economies of scale and scope and also market tests for efficiency. I also believe in the existence of public goods. Adam Smith also understood all of this as well. Contrary to popular belief, Adam Smith believed in a role for government in the economy, and it was an important one.

Where I disagree with many people, particularly people on this forum, is about the role of government. Government is supposed to be the shepherd that watches out for the public interest and provides for "public goods." It's supposedly their job. The U.S. is massive population-wise, sprawling geographically and incredibly diverse.. I actually feel like there is not enough government oversight over many areas (albeit I think there is a lot of waste and pointless government oversight in others) -- problem is there is also a lot of anti-government sentiment and of course the age old question of Quis custodiet ipsos custodes? -- "Who keeps the keepers?"
I am not a hater of corporations, they provide an economy of scale and help mass produce things that are expensive to make in small amounts, plus I am saving up to join the finance field with a degree.

The problem is they get too big and become intoxicated by the power over they hold over the apathetic masses. Johnny Mnemonic would agree with me.
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Old 2013-02-22, 18:02   Link #231
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There is absolutely nothing wrong with big companies. What is wrong is when laws no longer apply to them because they either become too big for trial or simply had new laws created by politicians under their pay.

Anyone who is above the law, become corrupt. Politicians or CEOs, it makes no difference.
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Old 2013-02-22, 18:22   Link #232
DonQuigleone
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There are some great large corporations. For instance, Toyota is a fairly decent company. They're efficient, and they're fairly honest all around.
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Old 2013-02-22, 18:35   Link #233
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archon_Wing View Post
Corporatism is not free market, simply because it requires government intervention to make it happen. They are artificially using the government to "cheat" and create the worst kind of monopoly-- a state sponsored one. With a strong enough monopoly and government stamping out alternatives, this is frequently no better than oppression in many cases.
A market without government intervention is not a free market, it's just a mess. This is a common misconception. Governments need to make sure markets retain a level playing field and market participants do not use illegal means to gain an unfair advantage. That requires monitoring and and intervention when needed.

Unfortunately in the US there is this little problem of campaign funding which makes politicians, and thereby government, extremely vulnerable to corporate lobbying.
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Old 2013-02-22, 20:02   Link #234
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bri View Post
A market without government intervention is not a free market, it's just a mess. This is a common misconception. Governments need to make sure markets retain a level playing field and market participants do not use illegal means to gain an unfair advantage. That requires monitoring and and intervention when needed.
There is a significant difference between regulation and intervention. In my example, I'm referring to corporations using the government to their advantage and discouraging free competition by cheating the rules or more exactly, bending the rules to their favor. That, is not a free market by any logical definition.

It is sensible to argue that unchecked choice and freedom leads to messes. There are logical limits to what people can say, despite freedom of speech, for example. But I think there's a difference between moderating the playing field and getting involved. But these are governed by the rules of the land, hopefully, such as deceit, should already be illegal.
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Old 2013-02-22, 20:34   Link #235
Vexx
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Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
There are some great large corporations. For instance, Toyota is a fairly decent company. They're efficient, and they're fairly honest all around.
From my several decades of observation, the only time they had "trouble" is when they started adapting American style behavior toward their employees in the 1990s. They broke the "employed for a career" form of feudalism. Lo and behold, the loyalty and willingness to do anything for the company tanked.
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Old 2013-02-22, 20:46   Link #236
DonQuigleone
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Originally Posted by Vexx View Post
From my several decades of observation, the only time they had "trouble" is when they started adapting American style behavior toward their employees in the 1990s. They broke the "employed for a career" form of feudalism. Lo and behold, the loyalty and willingness to do anything for the company tanked.
Aye. True that. Still, when you read about what they were able to do in the 50s to 80s, remarkable company.

Even with it's faults though, it's still better then most. The same goes for many of the other Japanese manufacturers, like Mitsubishi.

Many American companies have also taken the lead from Toyota too, and have become much better places to work too. I think that ultimately, those companies which are "good" will have greater employee loyalty, and do better in the long run.

The competitive advantages that a company has from outsourcing is very easy to replicate, but the advantages Toyota had from it's efficient work force are exceedingly difficult to duplicate. GM tried and they failed (though recently they seem to have been improving).

I hope the recent "acceleration" scandal Toyota had will give them a wake up call, and drive Toyota back to the straight and narrow.
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Old 2013-02-22, 20:56   Link #237
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Originally Posted by DonQuigleone View Post
Aye. True that. Still, when you read about what they were able to do in the 50s to 80s, remarkable company.

Even with it's faults though, it's still better then most. The same goes for many of the other Japanese manufacturers, like Mitsubishi.
Dunno, Mitsubishi was part of one of the large zaibatsu that had a level of political influence to make the US military industrial complex green with envy. Even though their post war record is fine, I don't know enough about modern Japanese politics to know how far the current influence of corporations reaches.
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Old 2013-02-22, 21:11   Link #238
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Originally Posted by Archon_Wing View Post
There is a significant difference between regulation and intervention. In my example, I'm referring to corporations using the government to their advantage and discouraging free competition by cheating the rules or more exactly, bending the rules to their favor. That, is not a free market by any logical definition.

It is sensible to argue that unchecked choice and freedom leads to messes. There are logical limits to what people can say, despite freedom of speech, for example. But I think there's a difference between moderating the playing field and getting involved. But these are governed by the rules of the land, hopefully, such as deceit, should already be illegal.
By nature of money, government IS business. And the other way around. What is a board of directors, or a group of investors, or a union? All forms of government. Most companies are structured on hierarchy, very few are true democracies (co-op). It's a reflection of society itself. Money creates hierarchy, government does too. Those who have more hold it over those who don't. This isn't some "liberal talking point". It's historical truth.

We don't lack money. We don't lack resources. We certainly don't lack creative, smart, innovative people. We don't even lack hard working people. What we do lack is a sense of priority. Is it a good thing that huge chunks of the population have poor or nonexistent healthcare, education, nutrition, homes, clothing? Is it a good thing that marketing convinces people to buy shit they don't need to feed an economic engine that is wasteful and inefficient? Is it a good thing that we could give everyone on the planet everything they need, but choose not to because of some companies bottom line?

Since when have we ever truly broken free of the serf and master yoke? Is wage slavery any different than chain slavery? Does it suddenly become better because the whip is exchanged for the credit card? Of course not.

The society we live in today is the epitome of Nero fiddling as the city burns. This isn't alarmist extremist shit, it's just basic observation. The system as it was built is both insane and unsustainable. The only reason the elites see little reason to change is the blind belief that they'll be rich and then dead before it matters. The only reason the commoners see little reason to change is because they're too busy slinging mud at each other just to scrape out an existence.

Here's a wonderful Jon Stewart quote:

Quote:
"Hoooooly shit. No one's taking away ALL the guns. But now I get it, now I see what's happening. So this is what it is. Their paranoid fear of a possible dystopic future prevents us from addressing our actual dystopic present. We can't even begin to address 30,000 gun deaths that are actually, in reality, happening in this country every year because a few of us must remain vigilant against the rise of imaginary Hitler."
Bold is mine, and yes I know he's talking about gun control. But that's the rub, isn't it? We're so afraid of the future, that nothing is done about the shitty present. We will never change unless forced to, which is why the Democrats embraced Citizens United, no one went to jail for banking fraud, and Obama still conducts questionably legal warfare. Why change the system when it works for you? Why change the system when those it works for have the power to stop you from getting in the way?

What good did that healthcare reform fight do us, when people were so stupid as to believe that it would lead to Nazi socialism? Get your government out of my Medicare? Seriously?! This is what decades of corporate and party propaganda has done to the population: turned otherwise good people into blithering idiots ready to shoot the next fucker who dare questions how shitty of a deal they're getting, while blaming everyone but themselves for how badly they're getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard thirty years ago.

To me, nothing sucks more than reading the history of American progress, seeing how the reforms of the FDR generation, the fights for civil liberties, and all of that blood and work is either going down the drain or gone completely anyway because people are too damn cynical to believe that the world tomorrow could actually be better than today if they just gave a damn.

The fight in Washington for the last five years has been dominated by so called "entitlement" programs, trumpeted by a party that suddenly cares about debt and deficits even though they themselves happily helped create those problems. The pitch is that if the programs were privatized you'd get a better deal than the government could give you. The reality is that it's your life savings, and some fucker on Wall Street would rather have it in his pocket than yours. Uncle Sam was bought and paid for decades ago by the monied interests, and the only people who don't realize it are the ones blindly waving the flag believing that America is still number one in all the good ways. Sadly, they also vote, foolishly believing that the people they send to Washington actually give a shit about them.
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Old 2013-02-22, 23:25   Link #239
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I umm, have no idea how your post relates to mine, but ok...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Solace View Post
By nature of money, government IS business. And the other way around. What is a board of directors, or a group of investors, or a union? All forms of government. Most companies are structured on hierarchy, very few are true democracies (co-op). It's a reflection of society itself. Money creates hierarchy, government does too. Those who have more hold it over those who don't. This isn't some "liberal talking point". It's historical truth.
Well, in many ways the government acts like one. But there are some key differences. One being that if I don't like the way a business is handling something, I can just stop doing business with them. The government though, can force me to do things via threat of violence. I can't opt out, unless I relocate and even if so, they still can reach for me.

The other difference is that a government has a moral duty to protect and serve its own people by maintaining order, provide avenues of litigation between other parties, and guard against external threats. Someone needs to be able to forcefully enforce my own rights.

Quote:
We don't lack money. We don't lack resources. We certainly don't lack creative, smart, innovative people. We don't even lack hard working people. What we do lack is a sense of priority. Is it a good thing that huge chunks of the population have poor or nonexistent healthcare, education, nutrition, homes, clothing? Is it a good thing that marketing convinces people to buy shit they don't need to feed an economic engine that is wasteful and inefficient? Is it a good thing that we could give everyone on the planet everything they need, but choose not to because of some companies bottom line?
Yes, we can feed everyone. But we can't, because the higher ups have artifically engineered a crisis. They have basically stolen from us, and left the scraps to us.

And that leads to part two. Victim blaming. Why are people starving? They are lazy bums. This is bullshit. No doubt there are lazy people, but simplifying all victims into a small box and using that as a cue to cool story bro their struggle is plain silly. Not a day goes by without some pundit claiming that minorities are in their situation because they lack traditional American values.

Or what about people with mental illness? Nope, fuck them. They don't deserve any rights.

And this is why I'm irritated at all the distractions. Gay marriage, illegal immigration, drug usage. Pit the people into groups. Divide them. Make them hate each other...

Quote:
Since when have we ever truly broken free of the serf and master yoke? Is wage slavery any different than chain slavery? Does it suddenly become better because the whip is exchanged for the credit card? Of course not.

The society we live in today is the epitome of Nero fiddling as the city burns. This isn't alarmist extremist shit, it's just basic observation. The system as it was built is both insane and unsustainable. The only reason the elites see little reason to change is the blind belief that they'll be rich and then dead before it matters. The only reason the commoners see little reason to change is because they're too busy slinging mud at each other just to scrape out an existence.
And that's what it leads to. Today slavery is not of the chain but of ignorance. Anyone who questions authority is un-American. Anyone who puts more thought is scoffed at daring to use crap like facts.

Quote:
Bold is mine, and yes I know he's talking about gun control. But that's the rub, isn't it? We're so afraid of the future, that nothing is done about the shitty present. We will never change unless forced to, which is why the Democrats embraced Citizens United, no one went to jail for banking fraud, and Obama still conducts questionably legal warfare. Why change the system when it works for you? Why change the system when those it works for have the power to stop you from getting in the way?
Until Americans can look in the mirror and be like "Well, if we're lagging behind the rest of the world, maybe, just maybe, we're doing something wrong?", we won't go anywhere. Nah. That would be too simple.
Quote:
What good did that healthcare reform fight do us, when people were so stupid as to believe that it would lead to Nazi socialism? Get your government out of my Medicare? Seriously?! This is what decades of corporate and party propaganda has done to the population: turned otherwise good people into blithering idiots ready to shoot the next fucker who dare questions how shitty of a deal they're getting, while blaming everyone but themselves for how badly they're getting fucked by a system that threw them overboard thirty years ago.

To me, nothing sucks more than reading the history of American progress, seeing how the reforms of the FDR generation, the fights for civil liberties, and all of that blood and work is either going down the drain or gone completely anyway because people are too damn cynical to believe that the world tomorrow could actually be better than today if they just gave a damn.

The fight in Washington for the last five years has been dominated by so called "entitlement" programs, trumpeted by a party that suddenly cares about debt and deficits even though they themselves happily helped create those problems. The pitch is that if the programs were privatized you'd get a better deal than the government could give you. The reality is that it's your life savings, and some fucker on Wall Street would rather have it in his pocket than yours. Uncle Sam was bought and paid for decades ago by the monied interests, and the only people who don't realize it are the ones blindly waving the flag believing that America is still number one in all the good ways. Sadly, they also vote, foolishly believing that the people they send to Washington actually give a shit about them.
The GOP leaders love entitlements. So do the Democrat leaders. They are the hugest supporters of it. They are the biggest beneficiaries of it. And that is why they oppose any that benefits anyone other then them. It's just that they give us that hypocrisy about hard work and other generic moral arguments to cover the situation up. Otherwise, people would realize those people who rage the hardest about helping the poor are the biggest leeches of all.

So like I've said countless times in this thread, I find it utterly hilarious they're trying to blame illegals for being the leeches that drain society, lol.
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Old 2013-02-23, 02:12   Link #240
Solace
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archon_Wing View Post
I umm, have no idea how your post relates to mine, but ok...

Well, in many ways the government acts like one. But there are some key differences. One being that if I don't like the way a business is handling something, I can just stop doing business with them. The government though, can force me to do things via threat of violence. I can't opt out, unless I relocate and even if so, they still can reach for me.

The other difference is that a government has a moral duty to protect and serve its own people by maintaining order, provide avenues of litigation between other parties, and guard against external threats. Someone needs to be able to forcefully enforce my own rights.
I should have been more specific when I quoted you. This is the part that got my rant started. Great response post though.

Quote:
In my example, I'm referring to corporations using the government to their advantage and discouraging free competition by cheating the rules or more exactly, bending the rules to their favor. That, is not a free market by any logical definition.
But that's exactly what businesses are supposed to do. I have a business because I gain something from it; in particular, money. For the consumer, competition is great! But for my business, competition is bad. Why would I want another business taking some of my pie? The only reason I would try to outdo him is to drive him out of business so that I can have all my pie to myself.

In theory, a free market is intended to provide the benefit to the consumer, but the idea of the free market is the antithesis of the profit motive. You can never have an equal market, and because of that, the side with the edge will grow it, and eventually abuse it.

Teddy Roosevelt understood this, and took up the flag of anti-trust. The breaking of "too big to fail" to reinvigorate the market by allowing competition again is the reason we have laws against monopolies. However we haven't had a serious anti-trust case in a long time. Microsoft, I guess? They settled out of court, if I recall.

2008 should have seen a complete dismantling of the financial system using anti-trust. Instead, the government bought controlling stakes in companies and flooded every "troubled" company with money. They haven't turned off that faucet yet, and if anything have opened it up even more. It's almost blackmail, at this point. "Give us money, or we crash the market". Forget free market, that's not even Capitalism anymore. It's just extortion. The government should have told them to shove it, but that's hard to do when those institutions also fund most of you and your fellow lawmakers campaigns. It's a poison pill.

But make no bones about it, government is the society. When people have power, government works for them. When corporations have power, government works for them. This balance of who gets to tell government what to do is the fundamental struggle of society. For the bulk of history, especially American, it has been business dictating government, punctuated by people putting their foot down and demanding change.
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