Monday, October 17, 2011

Get government out of corporations and money

The front page of the Sunday, October 16 Ottawa Citizen featured a very interesting photograph by Greg Southam of Postmedia News. 

I found it noteworthy first because the screaming protester looks rather primitive and mindless, and thus is a good reflection of the ideology of the protest that is based in the primitive philosophy of collectivism.

Protesters in Edmonton, above, listen to a speaker as the Occupy Wall Street protest rippled around the world and came to Canadian shores. Protests came to capitalsaround the globe, including Ottawa,

Second, I noticed that the sign said "Get corporate money out of politics". While I am completely opposed to the principles of the protesters, I do agree with the goals of this particular sign - but not in the same way as the sign bearer would expect. 

In a free society the role of government is to protect the right of citizens to live their lives in the fashion they see fit, peacefully trading value for value with fellow citizens, so long as they do not initiate physical force against others.  When force is threatened or used, government is the institution to which we delegate a monopoly on retaliation.  Government MEANS the use of force.  That which can only be done by force must be delegated to government, except for an immediate threat that invokes the right to self-defense. 

Therefore, any intervention by government in the naturally free activities of citizens, especially in the area of economic activity, which is essential for life, uses force against innocent citizens and is thus improper and immoral.  What the protesters do not state and perhaps do not wish to realize is that corporate money is in politics because the political system of a mixed economy both permits and encourages it.  In some cases, it even requires it, as entrepreneurs must fight a political battle to defend their rights against interference by others.  When government interferes in the economy it shifts the playing field from one where only voluntary, cooperative transactions take place to one where whoever can pull the levers of political power can use coercion against competitors and consumers.  When such a mixed system is implemented, such anti-freedom outcomes are perfectly natural and predictable.

Rather than focusing on getting corporate money out of politics, the true solution to the problem lies in getting politics out of corporations and money.  The fact is that there is not a single business that is not heavily controlled by many government regulations, thus contorting the economy into all manner of unnatural outcomes that would not happen in a free economy.  Underlying all of this is the government monopoly on money, which they use to cause tremendous damage to all sectors of the economy. They print and push money towards vote-buying, in favour of pressure-groups and to implement all sorts of inept, immoral and inefficient economic plans that cause only harm.  If politicians would leave corporations alone, competition through cooperation would ensure a much better standard of living for citizens.  If politicians would leave money alone it would end inflation and all the pain it causes, especially to those on the lower end of the income scale. 

The protesters should embrace the very thing they decry, but which they do not even understand well enough to define: capitalism.  Capitalism is the economic system that protects individual rights.  It is not the system that allows corporations to buy political power - that is the system where government negates individual rights in favour of whatever group can control the apparatus of the state - socialism.  Maybe I will drop in on the protesters and find out if any of them can even give an accurate definition of capitalism, freedom and socialism...

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