There Should Be No Monopolies.
The bribing Republicans told us that if we just stopped enforcing the anti-monopoly and anti-trust laws, that had protected small businesses for nearly 100 years, there would be an explosion of innovation and opportunity as companies got bigger and better.
Instead, we’ve seen every industry in America become so consolidated that competition is dead. Price gouging and profiteering reign. It’s impossible to start or find small family-owned businesses anymore in towns, malls, and the suburbs. It’s all giant chains, many now owned by hedge funds or private equity. Few family or local businesses can compete against such giants.
While industry-paid economists attempt to dispute the extent to which skyrocketing corporate profits are impacting inflation, the data shows conclusively that profits constituted a much larger portion of price increases last year than at any point in recent history. This is called “price gouging.” The corporate-paid economists attempt to hide the extent to which corporate consolidation has enabled these price increases. These corporate economists don't want to go against the industries that pay their salaries. In other words, when just a few companies dominate an industry, those companies are able to increase their prices more than they would be able to do in a more competitive environment.
Republicans told us that if we just changed the laws to let corporations pay their senior executives with stock (in addition to cash) they’d be “more invested” in the fate and future of the company and business would generally become healthier. Instead, nearly every time a corporation initiates a stock buyback program, millions and often billions of dollars flow directly into the pockets of the main shareholders and executives — while workers, the company, and society suffer the loss.
Republicans told us that if we just let a handful of individual companies and billionaires buy most of our media, our economy would flourish and grow, and we would have the most diverse media landscape in the world. At first, as the internet was opening in the 90s, they even giddily claimed it was happening. Now a small group of often-rightwing companies owns our major media/internet companies, radio and TV stations, as well as local newspapers across the country. In such a landscape, progressive voices, as you can imagine, are generally absent. The Oligarch who have pilfered our prosperous companies, stole and sold our patent libraries, stole our retirements, our pensions and now they are going to prostitute our educational system, just how is a portion of the public going to keep supporting the people who are keeping their foot on your neck?
Monopolistic consolidation of the American economy is so complete that American consumers are being openly played as the world’s suckers. We pay more — often twice to ten times more — than the citizens of any other developed country for everything from pharmaceuticals to broadband to cell service. There was a time in America when Congress did something about monopolies: that time is now gone, as lawmakers are regularly bribed by the very corporations they would have to pass laws to regulate.
Monopolies have jacked up prices this far above what they should be because they can. Gouging. They use inflation as an excuse. The issue with oil is not just supply and demand. We actually have a fairly significant amount of supply and don't have an extraordinary amount of demand. We're not even back to pre-pandemic levels. There is a massive amount of Wall Street speculation that is also causing an increase in gas prices. Remember on April 17, 2020, when the price of Oil went to $-55.90? They should have been paying you to buy gas!
Inflation is the new business model. There is no great shortage of anything. At least half of the inflation we are experiencing right now is caused by big corporations, which are essentially monopolies, in their industries that are able to price gouge. For example, there are only basically four major airlines in America, their fares right now are over 20% higher than they were a year ago. They're just using their Monopoly power to raise prices. This is happening across every industry because the Bribe System has created virtual monopolies that have eliminated any competition. Half of our inflation is coming from the oil industries which maintain high oil prices because they can without competition or regulation. An easy solution is to go back to the law we had from 1973 to 2015 which made it illegal to export oil from the United States. We should keep our oil here, not ship it outside America just so Oil Companies can make more money. These companies are not patriotic to America.