By Lance Winslow
Over the years I’ve come to realize that the game is rigged in our economy, and the free enterprise system has been prostituted to the point where it is no longer fair for the participants or many of the businesses. In other words, it is a sham or close to it sometimes. Whereas, it is true that in the United States it is fairer than most other countries, we are not without our own problems, or the challenges that Adam Smith warned us about; the incestuous relationship between big business and government.
Actually, the problems are at every level of government and they just get worse with larger monied interests the higher up you go. And if you think things are bad here, they are much worse in other countries, even industrialized nations which claim their markets are free and fair – they aren’t, it’s all just a façade. Reuters world news had an article published on May 26, 2012 titled; “Japan’s Renesas eyes 14,000 job cuts, chip plant sale: Nikkei,” and the article stated;
“Struggling Japanese chipmaker Renesas Electronics Corp is planning to slash as many as 14,000 jobs and sell a major semiconductor factory in Japan to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co, the Nikkei newspaper reported. Renesas is the world’s largest maker of microcontroller chips for cars, is also considering raising $1.3 billion in a share issue to pay for restructuring and appease lenders. The job cuts would be 1/3 of its workforce, a much more dramatic restructuring than reported earlier.”
The Japanese raided five plants owned by Intel Corp many years back, claiming anti-trust issues. Of course, those anti-trust claims came from competitors, such as AMD and Renesas if you’ll recall. Worse, our own FTC or Federal Trade Commission investigated Intel as well, which actually gave some global regulatory credibility to Japan’s regulatory agency for their actions.
It was my contention at the time the Japanese raided those five plants by Intel Corporation because they wanted to get to their files and learn secrets about their technology. They also wanted to hamper their American competitors, giving a leg up to their own chipmakers. Are you surprised, because I am not, and similar things have happened in other countries. In fact, any time there is any sort of question of any American business here in the United States, the European Union also opens up a case.
Of course, it pays for them to do this because it helps their corporations their compete against American multinational conglomerates that truly own the global market due to lower prices, better products, and their free enterprise roots. The game is rigged, whether you are a small business at the city level, running a regional business, operating in multiple states, or even globally. What people read in the newspapers is much different than the deals being made behind the scenes.
The corruption is running rampant around the globe, and yet if we are to trade with other nations, we have to deal with at least some of this. Unfortunately we are teaching the rest of the world our bad habits, and showing them that corruption pays. It shouldn’t, and if we ever want global free markets, we need to knock these things off, not just here at home, but we must demand fairness and free markets, and free and fair trade throughout the world.
The problem is humans are inherently corrupt, and in my professional opinion they suck, and they are too ignorant to even realize the opportunities they are missing out on because they won’t change their behavior. Of course, that’s just my opinion after 30 years of studying these issues around the world. Luckily, what goes around – comes around and today, it appears the playing field is being leveled, and that’s a good thing.
You might disagree, but I would challenge you on your points of contention, as perhaps you have some self-serving motivation for believing whatever it is you think you believe. Indeed I hope you will please consider all this and think on it.
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