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corporatism

This new mode of authoritarianism mimics a form of terrorism because it abstracts economics from ethics and social costs, makes a mockery of democracy, works to dismantle the welfare state, thrives on violence, undermines any public sphere not governed by market values and transforms people into commodities. American society’s rigid emphasis on unfettered individualism, competitiveness and flexibility displaces compassion, sharing and a concern for the welfare of others. In doing so, it dissolves crucial social bonds, weakens public trust and undermines the profound nature of social responsibility and its ensuing concern for others. In removing individuals from broader social obligations, it not only tears up social solidarities, it also promotes a kind of individual and collective psychosis that is pathological in its disdain for public goods, community, social provisions and public values. As Hannah Arendt argued, we live in a time of absolute meaninglessness, which is the foundation of absolute evil, all of which produces a monstrous form of politics. Of course, this monstrous politics is revealed not only in savage social policies and attacks on the poor, public servants, women and young people, but also in the inability of American society to react to the suffering of others. Put differently, the United States has dethroned any viable notion of politics committed to the promise of a sustainable democracy. We have given up on the notion of the common good, social justice and equality that has been replaced by the crude discourses of commerce and militarization. Henry A. Giroux

Based on 2007 data (the most recently collected), 1,925 companies in the United States that employed 5,000 or more people represented just 32-thousandths of one percent of all companies, but had 33 percent of all business employees, 37 percent of all business payrolls, and 43 percent of all business revenues. How the executives in control of these very large corporations allocate resources has a profound impact on how the economy performs. William Lazonick

Once upon a time, monopoly and oligopoly were illegal in America. Our ancestors believed, correctly, that concentrated economic power was incompatible with democracy in all sorts of ways. Since the days of Ronald Reagan, however, every succeeding administration has chosen to enforce the antitrust laws only if the monopoly or oligopoly in question threatened to cause big price increases for consumers— and sometimes not even then. This has come to mean that nearly all mergers and takeovers are permitted, and that achieving monopoly has once again become the obvious strategic objective of every would-be business leader. Can The Democrats Win Back The House In November? Probably But It Would Take The Kind Of Bold Thinking And Bold Action They Fear

No tyranny, including the current corporatocracy, wants diverse groups to recognize what they have in common and to work together. Tyrants and other control-freaks know full well that achieving even small victories can transform people from a psychology of helplessness, hopelessness and defeatism to a psychology of empowerment. Coalitions and alliances that result in victories can inspire people to seek even greater power and demand true democracy. Truths and Falsehoods About Ralph Nader’s New Book

Large corporate capitalism is a breed apart from smaller scale capitalism. The former can often avoid marketplace verdicts through corporate welfare, strip owner-shareholders of power over the top company bosses and offload the cost of their pollution, tax escapes and other “externalities” onto the backs of innocent people. Always evolving to evade the theoretically touted disciplines of market competition, efficiency and productivity, corporate capitalism has been an innovative machine for oppression. The Myths of Big Corporate Capitalism

Since the late 1800’s, the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution has been gradually stripped of its meanings to protect Black Americans and reduce the effect that the ideology of personal property has on people. Where it was framed in the context of removing a people from having been considered mere property, from de-propertying them and placing them within full civic and civil rights, readings of the 14th have been used to prop up and humanize personal property – literally turning corporations into people. This is a big component behind, of course, both Jim Crow-type laws (which are still being practiced today albeit in less direct ways; c.f., with non-violent criminals) and corporation-as-people rulings (most famously Citizens United). The directly racist patterns that SCOTUS was holding up started being overturned by the Warren Court in Brown V Board, but class is still directly tied in to racism and so racism is still a factor in these recent rulings as they privilege wealthy white men and their corporations over the lives of employees, consumers, citizens, and poor people. Hobby Lobby Case: Not the End of the World, But a Revelation

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Since the late 1800’s, the 14th Amendment to the US Constitution has been gradually stripped of its meanings to protect Black Americans and reduce the effect that the ideology of personal property has on people. Where it was framed in the context of removing a people from having been considered mere property, from de-propertying them and placing them within full civic and civil rights, readings of the 14th have been used to prop up and humanize personal property – literally turning corporations into people. This is a big component behind, of course, both Jim Crow-type laws (which are still being practiced today albeit in less direct ways; c.f., with non-violent criminals) and corporation-as-people rulings (most famously Citizens United). The directly racist patterns that SCOTUS was holding up started being overturned by the Warren Court in Brown V Board, but class is still directly tied in to racism and so racism is still a factor in these recent rulings as they privilege wealthy white men and their corporations over the lives of employees, consumers, citizens, and poor people. Hobby Lobby Case: Not the End of the World, But a Revelation

…the fossil fuel industry, the defense industry with its appendages in hi-tech, and the plutocrats of Wall Street are largely directing the U.S. government. Our elected leaders are their proxies. The NSA’s surveillance machine is but a small part of a much large private sector data aggregation machine. Both systems exist to further the aims of the economic elite. An Open Letter to Glenn Greenwald

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