Regulation in Restricting
the Abuses of Capitalism
An Open Letter By Punkerslut
I have spent some time looking through your "fundamental principles," and I think there is more than just a little bit deserving some commentary. "We believe in markets. But when we see markets spinning out of control, we understand regulatory agencies are needed to safeguard Americans from tendencies towards greed and corruption..." This is the basic, liberal position on Capitalism and economics. There is some difficulty with this position, especially in the United States.
Take the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, passed way back in 1890. What does it state in section I? "Every contract, combination in the form of trust or otherwise, or conspiracy, in restraint of trade or commerce among the several States, or with foreign nations, is declared to be illegal." Sounds like every single member of the Capitalist class, through its subsidies, its proprietary-formats, its monopolization, its oligopolization, etc., etc., was guilty of this since the passage of the law. In 2007, when the global market collapsed, all of these companies were guilty of Anti-Trust Act. But there wasn't one prosecution.
I think you know exactly where I'm going with this: you never believed in regulation of the market, until the market fails. How am I certain of this? Look at the use of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act: it was only used to attack unions, claiming that Eugene V. Debs had created a "trust of human labor" by unionizing the poor, the oppressed, and the disenfranchised. Was it ever used to break up a monopoly? Only to give way to a bigger monopoly: such as breaking up the Edison Trust to give way to the Hollywood cartel, which still rules today (Fox, Paramount, Universal, etc.).
Regulatory laws have been in place for more than 100 years. Why don't you mention that on your website? Why don't you say "our recession occurred after more than a century of our market regulation policies in effect, with this whole system riddle with recessions from beginning to ending"? I think it's quite obvious why: as a political organization, you cannot profit from an honest investigation of history.
"An agreement which unreasonably restrains competition," this is the text of Section 1 for the Sherman Anti-Trust Act. Isn't Microsoft guilty of this? Their contracts allow any distributor to sell computers by IBM, only if they sell Windows with them, and if not, the price of the computer is tripled. This is still a fairly common practice, and it is definitively anti-competitive. Your courts, though, which are supported by the Democrat Party, didn't think that "unreasonable restrains competition," when it clearly cut out at least $1 trillion in GDP growth.
Unions of workers join together because the police and hired thugs break into their houses, burn their property, and lynch their families? Oh, why, that's clearly anti-competitive! Capitalists join together to fix an international cartel on a multi-trillion dollar industry? Not quite anti-competitive. After knowing the position of the Democratic Party on these matters, we know that the Democratic Party doesn't believe in any type of regulation.
Even the Democratic Party has gone to far lengths to deny the existence or the length of the 2007 Recession. In 2009, they declared the recession to be over in the United States, when real unemployment had just passed 20%, or, put bluntly, one out of five workers can't find work, and yet "the recession is over." Why is it over? Because the Democratic Party measures a recession by the profits of corporations, and not by the number of children starving in the streets. (Barrons.com Link)
In a 1968 report published by New Republic, it was found that not one single statement by the FDA was supported by any physician, physician group, or physician's association -- all support came exclusively from the corporate sector. ("Drugs: Deceptive Advertising," by Morton Mintz, 1968.) Dr. John Zalinsky has numerously reported to the FDA that there are at least 30 cases of chronic lung disease caused by "reportedly safe levels of beryllium dust," but again, the FDA refuses to even acknowledge or publish these reports. ("Safety on the Job," by Ralph Nader, 1968.)
W.B. Rankin was a commissioner for the FDA who was going to disclose the health problems caused by the fish industry, but his material was censored, his appearances and speeches canceled, and he has been completely ignored, because he offers criticism. ("Something Fishy," by Ralph Nader, 1968.) In 1968, the US Department of Agriculture spent $106,000 on promoting tobacco use ("Be Happy, Light Up," New Republic Editorial). Meanwhile, your Federal Bureau of Investigation engaged in a campaign of harassment, threats, and near terrorism in trying to deter Ralph Nader in exposing your other agencies. ("The Nader Affair," by James Ridgeway and David Sanford, 1969.)
And, at the end, your regulators end up getting fat paychecks from the companies they were supposed to regulate. How curious, indeed. "The best indirect evidence of this is the careers of the regulators, who serve a short hitch in the public service and then take fat jobs in the private sector, usually with companies they have regulated. It goes without saying that tough regulatory agency men make more enemies than friends if they do their job well..." ("Hot War on the Consumer," by David Sanford.)
"...we understand regulatory agencies are needed to safeguard Americans..." this is your position, but it sounds like a hollow statement. Have you followed the history of American regulatory agencies? We have more than a century of knowledge on it, and there's definitely something worth learning from this half of the country's history. Democrat or Republican, it doesn't seem to make much difference. In the early 1990's, John Kerry led an investigative panel against the corporate bank BCCI, which had stolen upward of $15 billion dollars, some of which came from Americans -- when it had illegally appropriated US banks and then funneled cash out of the nation to be spent by the executives.
Yeah, sure, there were great clamors left and right for "stronger regulation," "more dutiful regulators," etc., etc.. But twenty years later, a gigantic recession occurs, throwing one out of five workers into the streets. Your economic bureaus underreporting the unemployment number is similar in dishonesty to your regulatory agencies turning a blind eye to violations. There never was any hope in your system. For one hundred years, there hasn't been any honest prosecution of your anti-trust acts or your regulatory laws. But now -- NOW they're going to save us?
Wake up. Your Capitalist system is just undergoing the crisis part of its cycle. Your regulatory agencies, political parties, and lobbyist groups are all part of it; their food is bought with the profits from capitalist exploitation. You are what you eat, and the Democrats are exploitation just as much as the Republicans. This is a necessary vision to keep in mind, as it provides a clear-cut distinct explanation of how regulatory agencies have failed year after year -- it's because they are owned and controlled by the Capitalist system. It is more likely to toss a coin and receive heads 100 times, than it is for a regulatory agency to fail, every single year, for 100+ years. By the mere, humble laws of statistical analysis, I declare that your party always knew that regulation couldn't work, and that's why it promoted it.
You're not going to accomplish a world with "equality of opportunity," because the party that you serve has made an enemy of a people-controlled economy. The economy will naturally represent whoever is in control of it, and you can't change that with half-hearted, regulatory bodies that serve capitalists more than workers.
Thank you, I've read through your material and a number of Democratic websites in California. Even the California Democratic Party has absolutely nothing about what they believe in on their website -- just a list of who to vote for and some rather lifeless by-laws. If you could explain to me how you want regulation to work, I'd love to hear it. Thank you -- I patiently await a response.