Free Market Capitalism Is Dead – Get Over It
Kevin Drum has a good take down of the credit-card industry here, where they are complaining about how “the government gets in the way of the free-market system”. As Drum points out, this is an industry that is no where close to being a “free market” when the industry dictates exactly what merchants can and can not do with regards to passing along swipe fees to customers. Merchants are total slaves to the credit-card industry — there’s not even a hint of “free markets” going on here.
This is just another example of why “free market capitalism” in America is dead. As I’ve said before, for free market capitalism to work you have to have small, independent, non-incorporated businesses competing against each other. What we have right now in the credit card business is the exact opposite of that — Visa and MasterCard are effectively a monopoly, and they dictate exactly how things are done. If you think that’s “free market capitalism”, you are an idiot. The markets are not “free” and this is not capitalism. It’s corporate dictatorship.
And this is not just happening in the credit-card industry — it’s the same in the banking industry as a whole, as well as in the oil and energy business, the health care industry, the pharmaceutical industry, and on and on. Free market capitalism is dead — we need to get over it and start working on a new system that actually works.