Saturday, July 15, 2017

Argentina, Bezos,

What do Argentina and Bezos have in common?

At one time, Argentina had one of the most dynamic economies in the world.  "Crony Capitalism" destroyed that economy.  The name "Crony Capitalism" is a study of irony.  There is virtually no Capitalism in Crony Capitalism.  "It is not what you know, it is who you blow."

As a side note:  The Pope is from Argentina and "Capitalism" leaves a sour taste in his mouth.  One suspects he finds Socialism more appealing.  Perhaps it is more honest.  Crony Capitalism pretends to operate under the banner of merit and enterprise and Socialism is more honest.  Sadly, Pope Francis never had much exposure to Capitalism-sans-Crony.

Business owners across America recently learned that Amazon.com, the business that has been putting hundreds of thousands of them out of business, has been receiving a subsidy from the US Government of about $1.50 for every package delivered via USPS.

Imagine you are a hardware store on Main Street in Eaton Rapids.  You pay your taxes.  You know many of the customers who come into your store are touching and feeling and checking screw sizes...and then run home and order it from Amazon because it is cheaper.

So how would you feel after you learned that the taxes you have been paying are being used to subsidize your competitor; to put you out of business?

That  is Crony Capitalism.

Apologists might claim that firms like Amazon are the inevitable wave of the future.  That inefficient brick-and-mortar stores need to just suck-it-up and accept reality.

OK, if they are so "inevitable" then they should have no problem paying their own way, right?  If their "business model" is so incredibly robust then they should still thrive if/when the subsidies are removed.

The take-home quote
What matters most for widespread prosperity is that the political and economic institutions be fair and inclusive.
 The Government picking winners and losers is not fair and inclusive.

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