The Free Market Jungle
I don’t have much to talk about tonight so I think I’ll just take a short moment to discuss a fairly simple concept that is an utter failure. It’s known as the Free Market, occasionally people might think that Christianity is the largest religion in the United States, however I would like to hyperbolically state that the Free Market is a much larger and more eagerly followed one.
At the very least the fantasy itself is the leading force behind marginalizing middle and lower class people. The idea itself is actually fairly sensible. The Free Market is a situation in which you have little to no government regulation, the actual regulation goes on at the consumer level. If a company does not act within the interest of the people the people will cease to purchase from them and they will collapse.
It’s genius is its simplicity, in the same way that creationism is more appetizing to the average voter than evolution, the idea of the free market is more appetizing than a series of checks and balances. The problem is that this system does not account for a fairly large problem, the corporation. When a business gets large enough that it has major capital behind its name it can begin to actually buy up the competition, normally we’d think of this as a Monopoly, however as the years have passed it has become more and more difficult to be considered one.
Electronic Arts or Activision are fantastic examples in the gaming sphere, The Oil Industry is what is called a force monopoly (it actually has a different name but I’m not recalling it at this moment), or even Comcast in the states.
These companies actively pursue actions that create a difficult environment for competition, they can afford to take a loss for extended periods of time which allow them to undercut their competition. Another tactic known as starving the beast actively is performed where you make your target audience too poor to take into account anything but the cost of an item.
Once you reach this point the free market devolves into a system where people merely buy what is cheapest and they complain later about the poor service, environmental damage, or other negatives of the companies they routinely invest in.
For evidence of this ask anyone you know about how they feel about the oil industry, or Comcast, or EA, or Activision, or the MPAA, or the RIAA, or effectively any other major corporation in the united states. With the exception of possibly Valve and a small handful of name brand companies you will find that most people will talk negatively about these places, and yet they turn millions in profits, some even billions.
The free market is a fantasy, it is as flawed as Communism or Capitalism, it is as real as the tooth fairy and about as likely to lead you to riches.
Just about nothing anyone holds dear has come about by a truly free market and nearly no major industry could survive in one, they push this idea because it would give them complete control of the markets they currently head and eliminate even the smallest possible chance for any alternative to rise in the future.
The prices begin to go up, quality goes down, and until people start dying in factories nobody says a word. It’s a Jungle out there.