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It's Not a Free Market...
Western Hero ^ | 11 Dec 2011 | Silverfiddle

Posted on 12/11/2011 6:38:30 AM PST by Silverfiddle

...  when government restricts freedom of action

It's not a free marketplace when a union can cry for government to use its coercive powers to tell a company that it can't open that new airplane factory it just built. That is exactly what happened in the Boeing case that was just resolved.

The National Labor Relations Board has dropped its controversial case against airline manufacturer Boeing, which had become a lightning rod for conservatives.

The labor board argued for much of the past year that Boeing decided to locate a new plant to build its new 787 Dreamliner jets in South Carolina, a right-to-work state, in retaliation for strikes by unionized workers at its existing facilities in Washington state. (The Hill - NLRB Withdraws Boeing Case)
"Retaliation" is a natural reaction to market forces

What if Boeing decided to lower all wages by 10 dollars per hour and workers quit because of it, going to a company that pays more? Why isn't that worker retaliation against the company? A better question is, why would government prevent employers or employees from "retaliating?"  Retaliation is just a dirty word for a reaction to a previous market force. If Starbucks jacks up the price of a vento to $10 dollars a cup, I ain't buyin' no more coffee there.

Coercion is the Key to Progressivism 

This also reveals the coercive mindset of progressivism. There are still people in America today insisting that our economic decline is due to the decline of unions, despite the lack of evidence to support their contention. The only way enforced unionism works is if you chain down businesses and take away their free agency.

This is why Detroit, a once-thriving union dynamo, collapsed into a liberal junk heap. Union Labor bid its prices up too high, Big Business foolishly accepted, and government failed to protect them from the free market "retaliation."  Tens of thousands of manufacturing jobs headed south to non-union climes, and foreign imports further impinged upon the Big Labor-Big Business fantasy land of price-setting insulated from market forces.

Progressives would use government power to prevent such free-market reactions, setting up trade barriers that would spark trade wars resulting in higher consumer prices, tying down companies and forcing them to "take it," which is what the big three pretty much did voluntarily, to their ultimate detriment.

Communism, Fascism, Corporatism

Back in the bad old days, raw communism would do this by expropriating the capitalists' property, eventually running the confiscated enterprises into the ground, murdering those who resisted, and miring their societies in misery.

Fascism, communism's little leftist cousin, was more sophisticated, adding some sweeteners in for the bourgeoisie. Fascists were smart enough to leave the means of capital in the hands of the business owners; it was more convenient and efficient to just shake down everybody at the factory door as they left for the day.

The modern-day way of chaining down a corporation is with state-sponsored corporatism. Businesses will stay put so long as they are protected by an archipelago of government regulations, protections, exemptions and other formidable barriers that protect them from competition, giving them free rein to continually jack up prices with government-sanctioned impunity, making consumers a captive audience.  

As an added bonus, they can freely dip into the government coffers to the tune of tens of billions when their unsustainable business model inevitably fails.

Welcome to Corporate America.

Further Reading:
Rothbard - Power & Market, Ch 6

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Government; Politics
KEYWORDS: boeing; nlrb; statism; unions

1 posted on 12/11/2011 6:38:35 AM PST by Silverfiddle
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