|August 18, 2003
GOVERNMENT FOR PERSONAL PROFIT
Americans need to start thinking of the privatization of government as a movement away from government run for public good and towards government run solely for personal profit for the few. The lights going out because of power blackouts and the mania for deregulation are really two sides of the same coin. Read Power Outage Traced to Dim Bulb in the White House by Greg Palast at http://www.gregpalast.com .
Capitalism is an excellent way to organize an economy provided government intervenes to provide essential services to the citizens whose needs cannot be served profitably by the market mechanisms. Government needs to be involved in limiting the self-destructive elements of unrestrained capitalism. Excessive concentrations of wealth and political power make the market mechanisms breakdown. A pure “capitalism” in classic economic theory assumes that everyone has equal access to capital and information.
The reality of modern American capitalism is very different. Market power distorts capitalism very badly without government intervention. Government regulates the impact on society by the activities of the private sector pursuing profit. Being a polluter is a privately profitable behavior without government intervention. Government action is needed to protect workers trying to bargain for better terms of employment against far more economically powerful corporations. Consumers get better treatment and safer products thanks to government intervention. Only a strong government, that is responsive to the needs of the people, acting as an advocate can keep our corporations from destroying the American way of life and American capitalism. FDR is the greatest hero of American capitalism!
The Bush Republicans have failed to learn the lessons of the Great Depression. Bush is pursuing actively a redistribution of wealth from the middle classes to the richest elements of our society. The economy is grinding down because of these policies. The public regulatory agencies have been turned over to the industry interests they were suppose to regulate. Private profit has completely triumphed over public good in public policy under Resident Bush and his Republican allies. Secrecy in government and Corporate control over the media is keeping the American citizenry unaware of these outrages. We need to regulate the actions of Corporate America and remove their allies from the White House and Congress. We have to act now before the lights go off for all of us.
Column written by Stephen Crockett and Al Lawrence (hosts of Democratic Talk Radio which is nationally syndicated on the ieAmerica Radio Network). You can hear them via the Internet several days a week from 2-4pm Central at http://www.ieAmericaRadio.com. You are invited to visit the Democratic Talk Radio site at DemocraticTalkRadio.com. They can be reached by mail at: 7A Planville Drive, Fayetteville, TN 37334. Reach DTR by phone at 931-438-1500 or 443-421-0287.
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