Just eight men own as much wealth as 3.6 billion people–about half of the world population. In the United States, Bill Gates, Jeff Bezos and Warren Buffett are wealthier than half of everyone else. The wealth of the top 1 percent surpasses $100 trillion which is more than the global GDP and all central bank balance sheets. Amassing this kind of wealth, and therefore power, in a few hands could not occur apart from the private corporation.
This kind of accumulation of wealth and power seems inequitable to many people, but it is not new. It would have seemed inequitable to the Founders of this nation too. They recognized that the corporation essentially is a tool to enslave the masses. They fought the Revolutionary/American War, in part, to free themselves from the private corporation—the East India Tea Company. The company rose to account for half of the world’s trade. The company subjugated the colonists economically and the Colonists’ response to it was the Boston Tea Party and then the War.
After the War, the Founders of this nation addressed this issue, and others, through the Title of Nobility Clauses (anti-nobility clauses ) in the Constitution to prevent economic slavery from reoccurring through the private corporation. The nobility of the British empire also were aware of the excesses of the private corporation and big government. Lord Acton captured the sentiment of the Founders in his statement that power corrupts and absolute power corrupts absolutely. History supports his claim.
Government needs to be decentralized and economic/business activity needs to be decentralized too. The private corporation is a fictional creation (something that is false, but that is held to be true) of the government to limit liability, provide for a perpetual existence, and provide a mechanism that allows wealth, and therefore power, to concentrate in a few hands, unnaturally. Each of those characteristics works counter to individual liberty and the proper purposes of government. More than that, centralization through the corporation works against life itself as the response to the corona virus demonstrated. For example, the meat processing industry basically shut down because the entire business is conducted by a few corporations. The proper purpose of government is to hold people accountable for their actions, not to control entire industries or allow people to escape responsibility for their misconduct through use of the corporate form. The private corporation essentially is mind control on steroids for redistribution of wealth and power to the elite through the misuse of governmental power. Redistribution of wealth to the elitists, or even the poor, is not a proper function of government.
The proper economic system is private enterprise, i.e., through individual merit, not corporate enterprise, socialism, or communism. Venezuela, where people are starving to death, is a typical example of the consequences of socialism and communism. Private enterprise cultivates a mindset of responsibility, creativity, and continuity–among many other positive traits. Corporations cultivate a mindset of greed, slavery, dependency, and division. History indicates that when monopolies are broken up, economic activity flourishes. The break-up of Standard Oil, AT&T and the Bell Telephone Company are useful examples of that effect. The loss of the Netscape browser and the Tucker automobile company because the anti-trust laws were not enforced as written are typical examples of mega private corporations suppressing productive economic activity and innovation. Banning the private corporation would be a tremendous engine for economic growth and stability and personal responsibility, achievement, and innovation. Wealth obtained through the use of force, including the government, is counterproductive and oppressive to the masses.
President Eisenhower warned us of the oppressive nature of the “military-industrial complex.” It couldn’t exist but for the private corporation. It demands to be fed massive amounts of money from the federal treasury and it advocates for war. It is a threat to the well-being of this nation’s citizens and people throughout the world.
I have observed that catastrophic environmental damage occurs through the private corporation where it otherwise would not have. If the “bottom line” favors polluting, corporations pollute due to the limitation-of-liability shield. Much legislation, including that which allows for H1-b visas and O-1 visas that give our jobs to foreigners, is passed to promote the interests of the corporation.
President Eisenhower also warned us of the oppressive nature of the “scientific-technological elite.” We are nearly in “full flower” now. They have combined with the media to push a false narrative to support these “shelter in place” orders that have destroyed our civil rights, including our First Amendment right to associate and our rights under the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to earn a living. Currently there is no such thing as a “free press” as referenced in the Constitution—at least not as the Founders understood that term. Just six companies control more than 90 percent of the news media. This is a relatively recent phenomenon. The “press” used to be extremely decentralized, and that is the way it should be. Essentially, only the unelected decision-makers in the private media corporations currently have a “free press.” Even though they, along with the legal profession, are not elected, they effectively are arms of the government and have as much, or more, influence as any elected official.
Many years ago, Congress provided at least a partial remedy by passing the Sherman Antitrust Act to address the excesses of the “robber barons” of the mid to late 1800s, but the federal courts, which are in favor of big government and big corporations to expand their power, refuse to enforce it as written. The courts enforce other Acts of Congress as written; in fact, judges openly state that they must enforce statutes as written unless it would be illogical to do so. Judges do not claim that enforcing the Sherman Act as written would be illogical. Judges say only that they don’t want the Act to have the expansive affect that it would have if they did so. Congress has the prerogative to determine the affect of legislation, not judges. History has repeated. The Judiciary and the Executive must be compelled to enforce the Sherman Act as written to address the modern day “robber barons.”
Enforcement of the anti-nobility clauses would be an effective remedy to address the economic slavery of today through the corporation and government. I would advocate and vote for the courts to be directed to enforce the Sherman Antitrust Act as written to diminish the mega multi-national corporation, which ships American jobs overseas, imports foreign workers under H-1b and O-1 visas, and is a hindrance to economic growth, and for an economic structure that favors individuals and families having their own businesses.