Should Conservatives Boycott Big Businesses?

Like the Democrats, the Republicans have seen their share of special interest groups hijacking the party. 

Most notably recently, we have the SoCons.  Now, I’m not referring here to Republicans who happen to be socially conservative.  In a very real sense, strong moral beliefs have always been part of the Republican Party.  The people to whom I am referring are those who put particular social issues above every other issue in the race — to the extent of sacrificing those issues in order to get exactly what they believe they want on the issues.  So long as a man promises to try to federally outlaw gay marriage and abortion, their candidate of choice could be as fiscally conservative as Hillary Clinton or John Edwards and still get the vote.  Hence, the Mike Huckabee surge.

However, even longer ago than the social conservatives came the corporate hijacking.  For some reason, rather than the party of liberty, lower taxes and smaller government, for many Republicans in government we’ve become the party of Corporate welfare.  We’ve gone from getting government off our backs to allowing ourselves to be run by big business. 

Great.  I’m starting to sound like Ron Paul.

Now, don’t get me wrong.  I have no problems whatsoever with big business.  I’m all for it.  But there’s a big difference between free-market conservatism and corporate pandering.  Corporations, combined with big government, have all but crippled the options for the average citizen. 

People are flocking to the liberal socialists’ “universal healthcare” in droves because our choices for health insurance are so limited.  And, often being the only game in town, health insurance providers often have little or no incentive to treat customers with dignity or respect.  There’s one situation, which I’ll be discussing more about in the future (much more) in which a woman who paid her premiums on time and was hit by a truck was sued by her insurance company because she won a suit against the trucking company responsible for the accident.  Legal?  Okay.  Moral and ethical?  Just try and convince me.  And often, given the very limited options in healthcare, we feel like we don’t have an option.

But we do.

Far too many people are beginning to rely on government to keep big business in check.  They don’t like particular ads, or particular business practices, or particular prices — so they want the government to pass more legislation and regulation.  Much of what we see in the regulation category, by the way, is often unconstitionally legislated by non-elected government workers.  Lazy “activism” by people who want to have their cake and eat it too.

The fact is, built within the free market system, is the single most democratic and valuable tool in this whole fight:  the dollar.  We, the people choose when, why and how to spend it.  We the people get to choose where our money goes.  If not directly, as in the case of insurance companies (often) then at least indirectly by going after the companies who force their employees into substandard insurance plans. 

We, the people, have the right, authority and power to change business practices, to enforce a code of ethics and morality within the health and other industries.  We are able to drive down prices on needed goods — and even so-called luxury items.  All without a single government beaurocrat.

Not only is a boycott a good way to enact change, it is the most conservative means of affecting change in business.  It is allowing the market to work.  It is giving both consumers and businesses a choice: I choose to spend my money elsewhere until company A chooses to give in to my demands.

Now, as a fair warning, I’m not typing this in a vacuum.  I believe we have an opportunity, which I will be disclosing further within the next couple of days, to affect change in at least one big business in regard to healthcare.  Why is this important?  Well, for starters, because of simple morality and compassion.  From a political level, though, it’s because now, more than ever, it has become vital to prove the market system can and does work when it comes to healthcare. 

 And you and I can prove it.  No politicians.  No new legislation.  Just by witholding our dollars.  Just with a simple boycott.

Stay tuned.

-Streu-

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14 Responses to “Should Conservatives Boycott Big Businesses?”

  1. Thom Prentice Says:

    Thoughtful. Your point about “Corporations, combined with big government” was Musolini’s own definition of Italian Fascism.

  2. The Bushmaster Says:

    While I will wait for the “coming soon” “more” to this blog to render full judgment, I do have to say I am concerned. What the Hell does, “because of simple morality and compassion.” mean? Didn’t you read my blog on the “Real Healthcare Crisis”? As you may remember, I pointed out the REAL crisis in Healthcare is that the dims are convincing people that their is a crisis! Further, I pointed out that they think giving “free” healthcare to people is the “moral” “compassionate” thing to do. In reality, they are simply giving away MY MONEY taken from me at the point of a gun and creating a class of people dependant on the government. SO – While I am ok with limited “boycots” and certainly would rather the market correct problems than the government; you trouble me with your appeal to “morality” wihen it comes to healthcare.

  3. Thom: Thanks. Your reply is appreciated. I hadn’t thought about Mussolini, but it’s a good point.

    Bushmaster:
    tsk. Do you not know me at all? Hasn’t everything I’ve said and done to this point since you’ve known me been about convincing people of the dangers of government reliance?

    Would you disagree that over-reliance on big business, and the unchecked power of these same business harms our freedom as much as big government does? What I propose is NON-GOVERNMENT intervention by the People. Blind acceptance of bad business practice is just as dangerous to liberty as blind reliance on government.

    My point is that the people have all the power. When we remember that we do.

    For the rest:
    Would you, a Christian and pastor, disagree that compassion is a good thing? Or morality? While I certainly don’t want the government enforcing these things, is it not incumbent on Christians to be both moral and compassionate?

    The point is, don’t worry. You ought to know me well enough to understand that this, like all things, is about independence, choice and freedom.

  4. Damned unthoughtful. You wouldn’t much like it if a group of businesses formed a cartel and crammed their products down your throat at higher prices. Yet you characterize your proposal as a market solution. No, it’s a para-governmental solution. Government in almost every respect except the pledge of allegiance.

    I really wish you market forces guys would grow up.

  5. “government in almost every respect except the pledge of allegiance”

    That may be the dumbest thing I’ve heard this week — and I frequent Hillary Clinton’s campaign site!

    I suppose you would advocate the “bend over and take it like an inmate” approach to consumer economics?

  6. I don’t doubt that a boycott can be effective, but I wouldn’t characterize it as the market remedy. In fact, you’re organizing to create a buyers’ monopoly and thwart the well-understood behavior of markets where purchases are made in accordance with plain economic considerations alone.

    A market remedy is something like stepping aside to allow the market to produce a solution even in the absence of government or organized group intervention. I see no difference between government and an organized group. It may be that your group sets up as a 501c3 non-profit. That’s even claiming the protection of government.

  7. You’d be mischaracterizing, then. Consumers -are- the market. You can’t expect consumers to “step aside” to create a market solution, because without consumers, the market ceases to exist. Market behavior based solely on economic considerations is a myth. That’s why businesses have PR departments. If sales were “understood” to be based on economics only, ad agencies would suffice. But businesses understand that social image is also important.

    I’d buy the “buyers monopoly” thing if businesses weren’t already so far ahead in price-setting, trend-setting — not to mention that, in the case of necessary, or semi-necessary (as in the case of health insurance, in which many people choose to not get it at all), the industry has the public by the balls.

    Organized boycotts are how individual people can gain bargaining power with companies which have a lot of income at their disposal. In many cases — indeed, in the cases I’m suggesting — we -are- actually talking about economic considerations. It’s simply a matter of organizing consumers to level the bargaining table. That you fail to see the difference between that and government, I’d say, shows the limits of your knowledge of government. With government, we’re talking mandates. With an organized boycott, we’re talking about free will — all the way around. People don’t have to boycott, and, if the company doesn’t want business from the segment of society — or group — that is, they don’t -have- to give in to demands. That’s the difference.

    Talking about setting up as a 501c3 is using a blind assumption to make your point — which, fyi, it fails to do. The only legitimate purpose a group like this would have to set up as a non-profit, so far as I’m concerned, is to be able to raise funds without the government taking money to which they have no right.

  8. In simplest terms, a true market conservative sees no politics in the market. More than just introducing politics into the market, you want to bring about all sorts of distortions. Maybe it’s time to drop the pretext of being a market conservative.

    And, yes, if you’re going to raise money instead of sitting behind a lonely computer in the middle of the night, become a 501c3.

  9. What pretext?

    I’m not introducing politics into the market. I’m suggesting that people have the power to buy based on whatever they want to base it on. A boycott is nothing more than providing information to people and suggesting a course of action.

    If you don’t want your principles to be reflected in your purchasing decisions, that’s certainly your right. But it’s ignorant to suggest that basing purchasing decisions on anything other than pure economics is less than “conservative.”

    But, again… that’s the difference between us. I don’t see conservatism as a protectorate for big businesses — nor as an admonition to just keep getting screwed.

  10. Look, you can do anything you want, I’m just pointing out that your not a market conservative. You’re organizing to take economic measures as a means to a political end.

    I don’t object to your course of action, but do point out that you mislabel yourself.

  11. Ohhhhhhh.
    Um… I don’t label myself. I’ve certainly, nowhere on this site, referred to myself as a “market conservative.” (though, come to think of it, I may have said “free-market conservative — and I stand behind that.) I am a conservative, and I believe in the free market system.

    The problem here, I think, is that you expect that people will fit within given labels with narrow definitions. People don’t really work that way. To me, a free-market conservative is someboy who, A, believes in free market and, B, believes in smaller government. If we can use the market to further limit government, I believe this is the basis of conservatism.

    Man… this was a really involved conversation just to deal with a definition. Ah, well… on to the next.

    God bless.

  12. Keep on blogging. Nothing like devaluing free speech.

  13. Latest Fred Endorsements

    Since I’ve been tracking the blogger endorsements of Fred Thompson I figured an update was in order.  First up, Bob Owens from Confederate Yankee has given Fred his endorsement today.  Here is some more:Darrell of Alpha Patriot, Mike at Amer…

  14. should we?
    I’ll say this: If the “consumers” could rally in large numbers, then choose to not buy something, crash that stock, buy that stock, then buy that item in large numbers, we’d all be rich inside traders.

    But that’s a team-work thing.

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts, I enjoyed your blog =)

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