Friday, September 23, 2011

Consumer-less wealth

One of the biggest problems with our current economy is that many of the biggest corporations no longer need to rely on consumers for their profits. With stimulus money, record profit due to reducing the bottom line and utilizing tax loopholes, and huge amounts of cash gathering interest or being self-invested for profit, there's no reason for companies to base their profit on the people anymore.

With the economy the way it is, there is very little purchasing going on, at least on the level that helps boost the economy. People don't have disposable income and so aren't going after luxury items. When people don't buy, businesses suffer. And many are suffering right now, but mostly small businesses who, like the middle class, are wealthy enough to get slammed by regulation, taxes, and insurance, but not wealthy enough to weather the financial struggles and come out better than before. In short, small businesses lose and big businesses win.

The GOP likes to say it's on the side of small business, but they don't do anything to help them. If they wanted to help small business owners, they'd work to get people in the door rather than throwing cash at their competitors. Government stimulus money is how companies are getting by. They don't need people to buy products if the government will just give them money.

Eventually, we may even see companies that are created who don't produce a single good or service. They will simply be created to make money for their CEO's by taking government funds, utilizing tax loopholes, and engaging in investment practices. When this happens, it won't matter if the unemployment is 10%, 20%, or even 50%. It won't matter if people can't afford food, housing, or luxuries. It will not matter that there are no consumers, because the companies would be completely self-sufficient. It's scary, but it's starting.

The solution is that we have to stop government intervention in keeping businesses in the black. We need to break up big businesses that have monopolies on their markets, or that engage in questionable practices like this. Moreover, we need to put the power back in the hands of the people to decide who sinks and who swims in the free market economy. No one is too big to fail, no one is too small to succeed. We need to encourage buying by stimulating the consumer. Let's have the government bail out the people rather than the businesses. Let's have Congress pass every citizen, wealthy or poor, a check and tell them to go out and buy. When we raise demand, we force business to expand and hire. When more people work, more money is made, empowering the people even more and increasing our buying power. It's a cycle that grows stronger and stronger as time goes on. Let's get the ball rolling again.

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