Why The Left Now Embraces Crony Capitalism
Hypocrisy, thy name is progressive.
The reason some on the left now embrace crony capitalism is simple: their man, the emperor of market interference and its main practitioner, President Barack Obama, is at political risk.
So rather than attack crony capitalism as you might initially expect, Michael Kazin at the New Republic becomes its apologist. Think the left (that is, the Administration) and anything green (Solyndra, et al), the automotive industry (Chrysler and GM), and finance (TARP, AIG, et al) as recent examples.
Conservatives now object to “crony capitalism,” but for much of U.S. history, businessmen have been hungry for it. Since the early nineteenth century, the government has helped fuel economic growth and corporate profit-making, and savvy businessmen and, recently, businesswomen have lobbied hard to keep those benefits coming.
Kazin’s ironclad logic—that businesses want don’t want equal treatment from the government but instead favor preferential treatment, so therefore it is OK—fails at every level. His argument is intellectual junk food: gooey hypocrisy and pure idiocy on the inside and wrapped in a coating of absurdity.
The reality is this: crony capitalism offends America’s sense of fairness; crony capitalism hurts consumers; crony capitalism dampens innovation. Crony capitalism benefits from anti-competitive regulations as even Kazin points this out (while failing to acknowledge the benefits to the consumer of competition).
…the largest meatpacking corporations also welcomed the FDA, knowing it would signal that their products were safe to eat while raising the costs of production just enough to drive smaller firms out of business.
When you follow crony capitalism to its conclusion, you have a centrally planned and approved government economy, would likely really wind Kazin’s watch.Thus the problem is reduced to a very simple one: government is not powerful enough to properly reward favored industries, practices, and approaches.
How powerful does it need to be? Ooh they only answer more.