Thursday, May 23, 2013
Another gem, (this one three part, about 30 min total) from Dr. Heiner Flassbeck and The Real News:
HF: “That's exactly the attitude, I'm sure, in the financial markets; that's the attitude, après moi le déluge. They think, I don't care if I made money in the next two years or the next year; what do I care about the future? That's exactly the attitude.”
HF: “Yeah, that's one thing that I acknowledge already. Many of these people do not care about the long run. But this is mainly true for people in the financial markets, because they don't have any fixed assets. You know? They have nothing that can be lost, so to say.”
HF: “That is the crucial thing, because due to the ideology that prevailed over the last 30 years, some people, even ordinary people on the street, believe that the government does not have the right to tax away huge profits, because that would be against the efficiency of the market and things like that. And this kind of ideology we have to fight.”
Saturday, May 4, 2013
We have shown the problems with unbalanced trade. Now we deal with the 'investor-state
system,' whereby trans-national corporations- ‘investors,’ are, by international trade agreements such as NAFTA, given rights which transcend those of the nations in which they operate.
We note a positive reaction to the abuses of the investor state system:
“12 Latin American governments have gathered to create a common response to an increasingly common menace: investor-state suits, in which foreign corporations are dragging sovereign governments to extrajudicial courts to demand taxpayer compensation for health, environmental, and other public interest policies.” http://citizen.typepad.com/eyesontrade/2013/05/last-week-13-latin-american-governments-gathered-in-guayaquil-ecuador-to-hatch-a-common-response-to-an-increasingly-common-m.html
Indeed, if allowed, trans-national corporations are obligated to act contrary to the interests of any and every nation, to pollute and trample sovereignty, to exploit workers and violate public well being as long as it increases profits. According to Milton Friedman: “...there is one and only one social responsibility of business–to use it(s) resources and engage in activities designed to increase its profits so long as it stays within the rules of the game, which is to say, engages in open and free competition without deception or fraud.” http://anamecon.blogspot.com/2012/06/milton-friedman-social-responsibility.html
Simply, they have no social responsibilities to any society. The caveat, ‘stays within the rules of the game, engages in open and free competition without deception of fraud,’ is nonsense, a fob for fools. It is cast aside by corporations at the first opportunity to manipulate competition and the system, and deceive. Corporations must, in fact, do these things, in order to compete with other corporations, which are intent on doing the same thing.
And it is a duty of government, and the people, to oppose this manipulation, and to regulate, and to prevent this from happening.
Transnational corporations *cannot* be citizens of any nation. They cannot be expected to act in good faith, if by acting in bad faith, if by manipulation of law and system, they can secure greater profits. Corporations are predators, and the citizens and governments of all nations are their prey. Governments of all nations must beware, if they are to secure be blessings of liberty and prosperity for their citizens.
And when transnational corporations make the ‘rules of the game,’ when their lawyers sit in judgment, all bets are off: Anything goes. But you may be sure it will cost you.