Lobbying: The Global Toxic Effect

Lobbying: The Global Toxic Effect

Firstly let me state that I am all for personal lobbying I regard it as an essential democratic right.

However being a commie socialist nazi I do not think corporations are "people too, my friend"

Take this UK example

Microsoft executives telephoned Conservative MPs threatening to shut down a facility in their local area because of planned IT reforms, David Cameron’s former strategy chief has claimed.
~snip

Speaking in Westminster to promote his new book, he said he felt very strongly that lobbying often led to “terrible outcomes, such as a devastating impact on our health and environment” caused by the vested interests of big food companies successfully defending “toxic junk that ends up being fed to our children”.

Note he is not a commie socialist nazi and many on both sides of the aisle feel the same way, but are drowned by money and if that doesn't work, threats.

In the US

Something is out of balance in Washington. Corporations now spend about $2.6 billion a year on reported lobbying expenditures—more than the $2 billion we spend to fund the House ($1.18 billion) and Senate ($860 million). It’s a gap that has been widening since corporate lobbying began to regularly exceed the combined House-Senate budget in the early 2000s.

Today, the biggest companies have upwards of 100 lobbyists representing them, allowing them to be everywhere, all the time. For every dollar spent on lobbying by labor unions and public-interest groups together, large corporations and their associations now spend $34. Of the 100 organizations that spend the most on lobbying, 95 consistently represent business.

Of course there is always ALEC ready and willing to write our laws.

A paper worth reading [pdf]

Large corporations are an economic, political, environmental, and cultural force that is
unavoidable in today’s globalized world.  Large corporations have an impact on the lives
of billions of people every day, often in complex and imperceptible ways.  Consider a
consumer in the United States who purchases a pint of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.  To
many people, Ben & Jerry’s represents the antithesis of “big business.”  In contrast to large firms considered to be focused on growth and profit maximization, Ben & Jerry’s is
well known for its support of environmental and social causes, its involvement in local
communities, and its fair labor practices. For example, as of 2001 the company has packaged all pints in unbleached paperboard Eco-Pint containers and its One Sweet Whirled campaign is dedicated to addressing the issue of global climate change.

In a 1999 Harris Interactive poll, Ben & Jerry’s was recognized by the American public as #1 in a ranking of firms according to their commitment to social responsibility. But what the purchaser of the ice cream may not know, and cannot determine by reading the packaging, is that it is now a product manufactured by a major global corporation.  In
2000, Ben & Jerry’s was purchased in a semi-hostile takeover by Unilever,

Even though the top 100 corporations "only" control about 7% of the global economy ]in 2003].

“To put this in perspective, General Motors is now bigger than Denmark;
DaimlerChrysler is bigger than Poland; Royal Dutch/Shell is bigger than Venezuela; IBM is bigger than Singapore; and Sony is bigger than Pakistan.”

Corporate resistance by the world's largest energy companies is one of the main reasons why combating climate change is so difficult even though many claim to be environmentally conscious. Leaking pipes aside, accidents happen, we need more pipes.

Then when we have one sector that risks the global economy because of their size, we bail them out and allow them to grow ever larger.

Then we have global "free trade" agreements designed to both protect corporations from governments and individual litigation all the time ensuring maximized profits from cheap labor, the problem is exacerbated.

When poor countries object to corporations trying to force their toxic products upon their population [e.g. cigarettes] they are subjected to years of expensive legislation, which is inbuilt into a current "free trade" negotiation. However holding these same corporations responsible, is getting ever harder.

When corporations are big enough to override national government, rig elections or threaten the global economy this means they are too big to exist and should be broken up [and not fictively with the same board members/investors/owners]

So in the upcoming primaries who will I support?

Hmm.

That is a hard one.........not.

Bernie Sanders

Elizabeth Warren? Please reconsider, the primaries need you.

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