Rational People Fear Big Government, Not Big Business


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Few religious Jews or Christians believe that big corporations are in any way analogous to big government in terms of evil done. And the few who do are leftists.

That the Left demonizes “Big Pharma,” for instance, is an example of left wing thinking. America’s pharmaceutical companies have saved millions of lives, including millions of leftists’ lives. And I do not doubt that in order to increase profits, they have not always played by the rules. But to demonize big pharmaceutical companies while lionizing big government, big labor unions and big trial law firms, is to stand morality on its head.

There is yet another reason to fear big government far more than big corporations. ExxonMobil has no police force, no IRS, no ability to arrest you, no ability to shut you up, and certainly no ability to kill you. ExxonMobil can’t knock on your door in the middle of the night and legally take you away. Apple Computer cannot take your money away without your consent, and it runs no prisons. The government does all of these things.

Of course, the left will respond that government also does good and that corporations and capitalists are, by their very nature, “greedy.”

To which the rational response is that, of course, government also does good. But so do the vast majority of corporations, private citizens, church groups, and myriad voluntary associations. On the other hand, only big government can do anything approaching the monstrous evils of the last century.

As for greed: Between hunger for money and hunger for power, the latter is incomparably more frightening. It is noteworthy that none of the twentieth century’s monsters — Lenin, Hitler, Stalin, Mao — were preoccupied with material gain. They loved power much more than money.

And that is why the left is much more frightening than the right. It craves power.

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  • Judas

    This has to be the most brilliant article I have read in a long time. I believe the words on this page are what have been on the tip of every rational human beings tongue for a long long time, so thank you Dennis for finally articulating it properly.

  • StephenD

    Mr. Prager, once again you should be aware, I intend to quote you often. Brilliant work here sir! I thank you for it.

  • Bartimaeus

    Well said. If only Mr. Romney would be able to articulate these thoughts in his campaign.

  • Western Spirit

    a religion of the left is indeed a correct description of leftest dictates. a religion that, in some ways, ape christian believes in a perverted way. for instance, since they don't believe in god so they replaced the kingdom of god with a utopia on earth.

    everything they believe is earth oriented, even though we are only here for a brief time. for instance meat is forbidden, as prophesied in the scriptures would be a religion in the last days. this, of course, makes them holier than thou because they care about all life. all their believes lead to them feeling holier than thou. and, in fact, everything related to man being stewards of the earth has been twisted into a pretzel.

    according to their religion to be human centric is an abomination and many of our human advances and the means to attain them should be banned, such as experiments performed on animals.

    all the while they self righteously cry out that experiments performed on human embryo's should not be banned even though other means are available for doing the same experiments without violating humanity's worth.

    • Jim_C

      I really like your point about humanity's worth. I think it goes to the notion that we need some things to be sacred, or our humanity ceases to be valuable. But I think what you say about the supposed "religion of the left" (which is really a straw man) can be said just as easily about actual religions. Trying to shoehorn "good" into one side of the political spectrum and "bad" to the other side fails to account for individuals.

      • Western Spirit

        How does calling the left a religion a 'straw man'? And how can the same things be said about other religions? you sound like an intelligent man for agreeing with me about humanity's worth so how can you believe the Left's crap?

  • Western Spirit

    for when humanity's worth is established genocide is unthinkable.

  • http://cutthemalarkey.com Vic Kelley

    Very well put. Big business doesn't fear a free people that think for themselves. Big government is threatened by that. Finally, big business doesn't have as much contempt for the general public as does big government.

    • Jim_C

      Were you born yesterday? Even in recent memory, whether talking about Enron or Wall Street, the contempt of many in big business for the public, and even their own clients, is a matter of record from emails, phone conversations, and court testimony, and there are countless books and interviews with tales that make should make our blood boil. It doesn't even have to be an interpretation of their actions, which were contemptuous enough–it's their actual words. Show me the similar record of contempt from the government, and I don't mean your interpretation of their actions, I mean actual record.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100003407143135 Arpita

      BTW, How much did a “serf” have to pay to his “lord” under ‘feudalism’? Serfs were largely iutrlnnvaoy sharecroppers. They were loaned a small plot of land to grow their own crops, and in exchange were obliged to work the other land to produce for the Lord and his entourage. Not only didn’t they own the land, they were bound to it they couldn’t leave the estate without the noble’s permission. Largely, labor and barter were the units of economic exchange; money hardly circulated outside the top 5% of the rural population. Perhaps the single greatest contributing factor to the rise of classic serfdom was the military protection that the local ruler provided, under near anarchic conditions, that was a compelling reason for the former agricultural class descendents of slaves and small farmers to accept the deal. Most historians believe that what gradually ended serfdom in Western Europe (it prevailed in Eastern Europe into the beginning of he 20th Century), was the Black Death which created a massive labor shortage that broke down the economic basis of the system.

  • Fred Glass

    A fascist state by definition is a collusion of big government & big corporations.
    Power & money are interchangeable.

    • Western Spirit

      i think you are right the elitists of big government and big business are in control of this country. and unless we can wrest that control from their hands we've had it as a free nation.

  • Jim_C

    Prager demonstrates exactly why what calls itself "conservativism" is currently moribund. He sets up a tediously obvious polemic between two imaginary entities–"big government" and "big business," peppering it almost nonsensically with his usual feeble observations about religion. This is how people who don't understand politics talk about politics.

    The point about big business is not that it is "greedy" and "bad" or that government is "good"–it is that big business IS the government, often to the detriment of of the citizens, as our current financial crisis has demonstrated. Government, at least, has to be answerable to the public. But who answers for business when business interests have neutered and co-opted the enforcing bodies?

    Business has no compelling interest to look out for the public good. Business has no compelling interest to be loyal to a country. But business has access to government that you and I never will. These reasons alone render Prager's point superficial.

    Until conservatives can answer this question honestly, instead of hiding behind the same old canards about 20th century totalitarians, your philosophy can't hold water.

    • Knucklehead

      Typical liberal claptrap. Your liberal philosophy can't hold water and you know it. You don't even try. Better to play smoke and mirrors and trash the other side with your own silly canards.

      • Jim_C

        Great "argument" there, um, knucklehead. Just decide you needed to flex the typing fingers, eh?

  • Tim

    First of all where is the evidence that left leaning people are godless? Second, Russia and China are not Democracies. Third, you don't consider the golf oil spill, or the financial collapse to be big problems. Finally, the problem is when big business owns big government we the people are screwed. Far right and far left people can be dogmatic. I won't judge all of you by the John Birch Society, don't judge me by the Weather Underground. We have to work together calling us godless and stupid doesn't set a good tone for getting things done.