Monday, February 28, 2011

Feb. 27: "We Say.." oh, get stuffed.

Todays' editorial, "Let free market decide for itself", sets a new level of ignorance of history, economics and reality.

It began,  sensibly, with approval of the government for refusing help to an uncompetitive poultry farm. Then it drifts into a rant about how the free market is a sort of magic wands that solves all problems. And that any government "interference" is harmful.

1. For the wealthy, there is no such thing as free market. A chicken farm has to go  on the "free" market. Large banks and automobile companies get saved with "government interference" in the form of loans and grants.

2. Large corporations are often formed in the first place with government loans, grants and subsidies.
When the CPR was built, it was largely financed at the risk of Canadian taxpayers who guaranteed the interest on its bonds, who gave it direct loans and cash grants,who gave it the land the build on (and far more  land that contained vaulable resources.). It also protected Canada Packers,and Bell, Massey, the CPR, all sorts of corporations with high tafiffs to cut out foreign competition. It also imported labour from China and Italy and Europe to build them at dirt cheap labour rates. When workers asked for high wages, Canadian government sent out the militia to shut them up. All at taxpayer expense.

Does the editorial writer know nothing of Canadian history? New Brunswick, like Canada as a whole, was largely built at the expense of most Canadians - with the the profit for it going to the "free market". Just look around you right here in New Brunswick. How did so much of our forests end up in the hands of one corporation? How come some corporations get cheaper electricity rates?  How come the only place to get print news about NB is from a news corporation owned by one family?

3. How come so many large corporations get government contracts without having to worry about competitive bidding?  How come a hockey business can get a rink built for it at taxpayer expense? Some free market!

4. As for government regulations, Canada has a reasonably healthy economy because of regulations that were in place (long before Harper). Without those, we now be in the economic toilet with the US. In fact, if the editorial writer knew anything about economics and history, he would know most most of the world learned in World War I of the necessity for regulations. Without them, some corporations will act foolishly and greedily, causing enormous damage.

Business in Canada and the US never liked regulations - for much the same reason bank-robbers drug dealers don't approve of laws. That's why they pay off governments to look the other way, or to ease regulations as St. Ronald Reagan did, leading the US into its current mess.

Corporations spend big money to convince us all to be suckers, and make them even richer. That's why they pay the bills for political parties that are their puppets, run bogus think tanks like AIMS, and use their control of most of the news meda that write the sort of ignorant and predatory drivel that appears in the editorials of The Moncton Times and Transcript.

Big corporations did not build Canada or the US. Canadians and Americans did it by protecting them from competition, giving them money and lands and resources - and covering the costs with low salaries while they're social betters sneered at them for not belonging to their parasitic class.

Business us just hampered by regulations? Well, it wasn't regulations that made the current recession. It was governments that lacked regulations or, in many cases, ignored them. It wasn't government regulations that poisoned the Gulf of Mexico; and it isn't government regulations that are now poisoning Alberta.

History has proven we need some government regulations on business. History has proven that if we do not have controls, we cannot expect big business to act responsibly.

And the very idea that political parties, most of which get their money from large corportions, are forcing regulations on their paymasters is infantile.

I wonder if this is the same editorial writer who said children must listen to O Canada every day to become patriotic. But, oh, even with O Canada blasting at top levels, it's hard to be proud of a country that is home to The Moncton Times and Transcript.

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