Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Corporatism and the TPD

Catching up with some blog posts. Here’s one I started some while ago and never posted:

Corporatism is defined asthe control of a state or organization by large interest groups’. Unfortunately it is one of those words whose meaning has been blurred by misuse (sometimes deliberate) and you can find lengthy articles about it. The best I’ve found, which simplifies and covers what I mean, can be found here.

 “Corporatism is the merger of state and corporate power with each side helping the other grow larger. Governments own, invest in, or heavily regulate every single company in this country and have enormous influence in business. Politicians and bureaucrats have their own friends and cronies in those firms as well. It’s the same for corporations as they have lobbyists in government to make sure that all those investments and regulations benefit them. Both are intertwined to form a government-corporate state that prevents capitalism from functioning efficiently.”

“That marriage has grown big government and big corporations at the expense of individuals, their small businesses, and the free market.” 

Corporatism is what we have now, not capitalism. Even Noam Chomsky, that darling of the Left, when asked what he thought about capitalism, replied, “I think it’s a great idea if we were to ever try it,” (Chomsky, 2002). 

The TPD (Tobacco Products Directive) out of the EU is a perfect demonstration of corporatism in action. In the development of ecigs there was massive innovation, numerous products from numerous small companies, and it's been a real game changer. Only the special interest groups - big pharma, big tobacco, those sucking on the teat of 'public health' - didn't like that. So, allied with an authoritarian regime seeing tax revenue disappearing, they pushed for regulation that kills innovation, kills those small companies that cannot afford to adhere to it (also by generally shoving up other costs), and, by reducing the nicotine strength of eliquids, kills the effectiveness of ecigs themselves.

It is still continuing with attempts to ban eliquid flavours because children might be attracted to those that have the flavours of sweets, despite the fact that children who use ecigs usually smoked before and that ecigs have consistently been shown to be a gateway OUT of smoking. The cry ‘think of the children’ is often an excuse for heavy-handed legislation.

And of course all this is working because now there are people out there who seriously believe it is better to continue smoking than use ecigs. I’ve met them and been baffled by such ignorance. I lot is being said about ‘fake news’ recently and the finger of blame points at the internet. In reality this is just a magnification of what has always been happening across all news media.  

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