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View Full Version : How much Power does Corporate America have?



Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 04:08 PM
How much power do Big Corporations have in the united states?

How much wealth do they control? How many institutions are controlled by their board members?

How much influence do they have in the political sphere?


Many times when people talk about power they only think about official seats of elected power like government policymakers, but how much power (unelected) does Corporate America have?


Are the interests of Corporations the same as your interests?

Megaguns91
04-06-2010, 04:40 PM
I have the power.


http://www.velveteenmind.com/velveteenmind/images/2007/10/14/heman.jpg

Lager
04-06-2010, 04:55 PM
Any large entity that has access to money or produces goods or services needed or desired by citizens, has power.
Thus, unions, hollywood, the nfl, tv networks, newspapers, etc.
So, what is the point you are trying to make?

Articulate_Ape
04-06-2010, 08:12 PM
How much power do Big Corporations have in the united states?

How much wealth do they control? How many institutions are controlled by their board members?

How much influence do they have in the political sphere?


Many times when people talk about power they only think about official seats of elected power like government policymakers, but how much power (unelected) does Corporate America have?


Are the interests of Corporations the same as your interests?


On a scale of 1-10, I'd say D.

NJCardFan
04-06-2010, 08:28 PM
Without corporate America this country would look like China. You comfortable with that? Let me twist this around on you Wee Wee. If every corporation pulled out of this country tomorrow, what do you think would happen?

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:03 PM
Without corporate America this country would look like China. You comfortable with that? Let me twist this around on you Wee Wee. If every corporation pulled out of this country tomorrow, what do you think would happen?

No one said anything about getting rid of corporations or about a corporation-free America. Do Conservatives want a no-government Anarchy? You're not twisting anything because we aren't talking about extreme crazy positions. I'm simply asking:

how much power does Corporate America have?
what is the source of the power they do have (however much that is)?
are the interests of Corporate America the same as the interests of middle-class and working-class Americans?

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:29 PM
An exmaple I can think of is of certain groups putting money and lobbyists into washington to influence their decisions. Seems like a solid form of power to me. Lobbyists and campaign contributions are very strong ways to influence the government to your advantage.


In the 2004 election cycle, different groups spent a lot of money on PAC, Soft, and infidividual donations to candidates and parties:

Ideological groups (pro-life groups, pro-gay groups, ect.) spent a total of $72 million
Labor Unions spent a total of $62 Million
Corporations and Big Business trade groups spent $1.5 Billion

In fact, Big Business puts more money into parties and caiddates than every other group combined.


What does this mean in regards to power? What does this mean in regards to who the government tends to work for?

Speedy
04-06-2010, 09:35 PM
Any large entity that has access to money or produces goods or services needed or desired by citizens, has power.
Thus, unions, hollywood, the nfl, tv networks, newspapers, etc.
So, what is the point you are trying to make?

The point he is trying to make is that he deserves a piece of the pie just because he exists and if he does not get it, it is unfair.

Rockntractor
04-06-2010, 09:38 PM
The point he is trying to make is that he deserves a piece of the pie just because he exists and if he does not get it, it is unfair.

He will tell you it's not for him but other downtrodden people and he just wants to help!

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:47 PM
The point he is trying to make is that he deserves a piece of the pie just because he exists and if he does not get it, it is unfair.

No this is about power distribution. Who has the most power? Who has the most influence in the government?

The Tea Party constantly talks about The Government being the bad guy, but who controls the Government? Who funds the parties the most?

The Conservative narrative is that there are some big Liberal (aka: Socialist) forces at work, controlling the government and trying to use it against you and I. This narrative simply doens't seem to stand up to the fact that Big Business and Corporations donate more money to campaigns and parties than every other group COMBINED!

Rockntractor
04-06-2010, 09:49 PM
No this is about power distribution. Who has the most power? Who has the most influence in the government?

The Tea Party constantly talks about The Government being the bad guy, but who controls the Government? Who funds the parties the most?

The Conservative narrative is that there are some big Liberal (aka: Socialist) forces at work, controlling the government and trying to use it against you and I. This narrative simply doens't seem to stand up to the fact that Big Business and Corporations donate more money to campaigns and parties than every other group COMBINED!
Have you ever heard of George Soros little weeble?

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:50 PM
The Tea Party Narrative is that of average Americans being pushed around by the Powers That Be

I think the Tea Party narrative is tapping into very real and very legitimate feelings, but unfortunately it is being twisted to be used as a simple anti-Democrat political tool

How much power does corporate America have?

NJCardFan
04-06-2010, 09:51 PM
No one said anything about getting rid of corporations or about a corporation-free America. Do Conservatives want a no-government Anarchy? You're not twisting anything because we aren't talking about extreme crazy positions. I'm simply asking:

how much power does Corporate America have?
what is the source of the power they do have (however much that is)?
are the interests of Corporate America the same as the interests of middle-class and working-class Americans?
For starters, no, conservatives want limited government involvement. As for question #3, corporate America and middle class America have a symbiotic relationship. One cannot survive without the other(word to the wise, middle class America is working class America). And corporate America wields incredible power. Again, without corporate America this country would look like China. Is it perfect? No. Are there crooks? Yes, but they are dealt with. And I'd venture to guess that there are far more crooks in politics than there are in corporate America.

AmPat
04-06-2010, 09:54 PM
No this is about power distribution. Who has the most power? Who has the most influence in the government?

The Tea Party constantly talks about The Government being the bad guy, but who controls the Government? Who funds the parties the most?

The Conservative narrative is that there are some big Liberal (aka: Socialist) forces at work, controlling the government and trying to use it against you and I. This narrative simply doens't seem to stand up to the fact that Big Business and Corporations donate more money to campaigns and parties than every other group COMBINED!

If this were true, what was all the disrespectful behavior by the POTUS to the SCOTUS about? I don't care who donates as long as the rights aren't infringed on. Once you can tell me your take on unbridled and illegal Union contributions and influence (to predominantly DIMRAT Party coffers), we might be more willing to have this discussion.

I do believe that lobbyists ought to be completely outlawed and prohibited from approaching/contacting any government official, ever!

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:55 PM
For starters, no, conservatives want limited government involvement.

Exactly, being critical of the power and influence Government doesn't mean one wants Anarchy. Being critical of power and the influence of Corporate America doesn't mean one wants a corporation free America, only limits on their power.


As for question #3, corporate America and middle class America have a symbiotic relationship. One cannot survive without the other(word to the wise, middle class America is working class America).

I agree, they need each other, but their interests aren't the same.

Consider a predator and prey, they need each other. Without the prey the predator dies from lack of food. Without the predator the prey overpopulates, uses all the resources, and dies out in a mass starvation. Only with both of them is a balance found that can last several generations.

This doesn't mean they are looking out for each other.


And corporate America wields incredible power. Again, without corporate America this country would look like China. Is it perfect? No. Are there crooks? Yes, but they are dealt with. And I'd venture to guess that there are far more crooks in politics than there are in corporate America.

Who says that it has to be one extreme or the other? Why are the only options you can conceive are total unregulated free market vs totalitarian communism?

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:57 PM
I do believe that lobbyists ought to be completely outlawed and prohibited from approaching/contacting any government official, ever!

This sounds like a good idea, (and again, Big Business and Corporations have more lobbyists than all other groups combined) but lobbyists do have legitimate uses. They serve to inform congressmen about the issues, providing data and information about the industries and/or services they represent.

Rockntractor
04-06-2010, 09:58 PM
Why are the only options you can conceive are total unregulated free market vs totalitarian communism?

Is having just a little bit of cancer okay?

Wei Wu Wei
04-06-2010, 09:59 PM
I notice people here tend to take things and spring to the extremes, or resort to insults, or argue against things I'm not even saying.

I'm asking a serious quesiton, I'm not saying let's have a communist revolution, I'm not saying let's destroy corporations, I'm not saying corporations are THE ONE AND ONLY SOURCE OF POWER.

I'm simply asking, as reasonable adults, to think about how power works in our country, and how much power Corporate America has?

Rockntractor
04-06-2010, 10:05 PM
I notice people here tend to take things and spring to the extremes, or resort to insults, or argue against things I'm not even saying.

I'm asking a serious quesiton, I'm not saying let's have a communist revolution, I'm not saying let's destroy corporations, I'm not saying corporations are THE ONE AND ONLY SOURCE OF POWER.

I'm simply asking, as reasonable adults, to think about how power works in our country, and how much power Corporate America has?
You seem to think that a little bit of communism is okay, it is a cancer and grows within a society. It is not a philosophy that allows others to live with it when it controls society. China is moving away from it, it consistently fails when it is tried. We cannot afford your experiment Weeble!

Lager
04-06-2010, 10:41 PM
What about lawyers, do you consider them part of corporations?

Sonnabend
04-07-2010, 10:03 AM
How much Power does Corporate America have?

Ask Al Gore , George Soros, Michael Moore.............

Wei Wu Wei
04-07-2010, 02:29 PM
I'm asking you guys.

Lager
04-07-2010, 05:36 PM
Yes, corporations have power. Are they the threat and bogey man that liberals have been making them out to be? No.
Here's a case in point: Corporations give money to politicians and political causes. In general, corporations give to both political parties. Some corporations might favor one party slightly, especially republicans, because it's generally accepted that republicans favor the interests of business.
Let's look at another interest group; Trial lawyers. Trial lawyers tend to donate to democrats at a ratio of about 4 to 1 over republicans. Trial lawyers continually lobby to prevent tort reform. Guess what was left out of the Health care bill? That's some significant power there.

Now, in spite of what many may think after the SCOTUS decision on corporate rights, the amount of money allowed to be given directly to candidates or their campaigns by corporations hasn't changed. What has changed is that they can spend to influence elections or issues by running ads. Now that can have some affect, and it worries liberals more, because they judge the general public as less smart than themselves, and therefore, they think we're sheep who will be manipulated or brainwashed by an Exxon or AIG ad, even though we know it's sponsored by Exxon or AIG.

But look at what a Micheal Moore or others of his ilk can do with the power of Hollywood at his beck and call. Do you think he'd have any problems getting total financial and production support if he wanted to time the release of one of his beloved (and guaranteed to garner several awards), "mockumentaries" to coincide with an important election? Do you think the movie "sicko" influenced the health care debate? That's some power there, too.

Wei Wu Wei
04-07-2010, 05:46 PM
Yes, corporations have power. Are they the threat and bogey man that liberals have been making them out to be? No.
Here's a case in point: Corporations give money to politicians and political causes. In general, corporations give to both political parties. Some corporations might favor one party slightly, especially republicans, because it's generally accepted that republicans favor the interests of business.

They give more money than any other interest group to both parties.


Let's look at another interest group; Trial lawyers. Trial lawyers tend to donate to democrats at a ratio of about 4 to 1 over republicans. Trial lawyers continually lobby to prevent tort reform. Guess what was left out of the Health care bill? That's some significant power there.

How about the fact that the bill as passed aims to get every one in America to buy private corporate insurance? The public option was dropped.

But yes, different groups also have influence.


Now, in spite of what many may think after the SCOTUS decision on corporate rights, the amount of money allowed to be given directly to candidates or their campaigns by corporations hasn't changed. What has changed is that they can spend to influence elections or issues by running ads. Now that can have some affect, and it worries liberals more, because they judge the general public as less smart than themselves, and therefore, they think we're sheep who will be manipulated or brainwashed by an Exxon or AIG ad, even though we know it's sponsored by Exxon or AIG.

Actually these ads don't need to say who they are sponsored by. Exxon can form a group called "Citizens for Energy Independence" and runs millions of dollars worth in advertisement using that name, without ever having to say it's actually the Exxon corporation that's funding them.



But look at what a Micheal Moore or others of his ilk can do with the power of Hollywood at his beck and call. Do you think he'd have any problems getting total financial and production support if he wanted to time the release of one of his beloved (and guaranteed to garner several awards), "mockumentaries" to coincide with an important election? Do you think the movie "sicko" influenced the health care debate? That's some power there, too.

Almost all major movie productions are funded by large production companies and have the backing of large corporations or people who've worked in those corporations.

While there are some film makers like Moore who explicitly put out messages, I think the more influential fact is the apparently non-ideological films that make up 90% of the market. These films socialize us and are filled with ideology but because they aren't forthright with "messages" they pass under the radar.

Lager
04-07-2010, 05:52 PM
I would argue that the public option was dropped not because of opposition by any corporation, but by opposition gleaned from polling average citizens. There you have it. We the people still have the most power, if we use it, and use it wisely.

Lager
04-07-2010, 05:56 PM
They give more money than any other interest group to both parties.



Yes, and I would maintain that tends to balance things. You can't sway outcomes as much if you're giving to both sides, can you?


Actually these ads don't need to say who they are sponsored by. Exxon can form a group called "Citizens for Energy Independence" and runs millions of dollars worth in advertisement using that name, without ever having to say it's actually the Exxon corporation that's funding them.


And how long would it take for that information to be plastered all over the internet? About as long as it would take to google, "Citizens for E...".

Wei Wu Wei
04-07-2010, 06:27 PM
I would argue that the public option was dropped not because of opposition by any corporation, but by opposition gleaned from polling average citizens. There you have it. We the people still have the most power, if we use it, and use it wisely.

How about the fact that the main sources of information ARE corporate sources? Corporate America doesn't just influence the media, it's run by it! Corporate news and especially explicitly right-wing sources like Rush Limbaugh (America's highest rated radio show) dominate the airwaves. Having billions of dollars doesn't just get you close to policy-makers. Remember that even though, in order to sustain a consistent voting base, the far-right is led to believe that all news sources are "liberal", the fact is that they are all major corporations and part of even larger corporate networks. The people who run these institutions are not elected officials, they aren't representatives, they are just people with their own interests like every other person, and the simple fact is that the owners of (major) corporations simply have different interests, live in different worlds, and are affected by policy differently than you and I.

For God's sake last week the top news story on CNN was the IPad.

When the public option was described (as it was drawn up) as an optional public insurance plan to be offered along with various other private options as a means to allow an affordable non-profit plan for people and to bring down private costs, then most of the public supported it.

I'm not saying that they have total unilateral omnipotence, but they do have an extreme amount of influence and it shouldn't be ignored.

Wei Wu Wei
04-07-2010, 06:36 PM
Yes, and I would maintain that tends to balance things. You can't sway outcomes as much if you're giving to both sides, can you?

Yes of course you can. My god stop thinking about this in terms of silly politics, this is not a game. This isn't about them wanting republicans or democrats to win. If they give to both parties, they win no matter what! They don't give two shits whether the person in office has an R or a D by their name, it doesn't matter. What's important is what bills they pass and what actions they take in office.




And how long would it take for that information to be plastered all over the internet? About as long as it would take to google, "Citizens for E...".

It IS all over the Internet, but 98% of the American public do not jump and research the funding sources of every political ad they see. People almost never do this. Ads work in a very quick time frame, whether it's a billboard or television ad the message (along with whatever horribly biased information and distortion) is flashed at you, a name at the end is given "Paid for by The Freedom Foundation to Preserve Liberty and Justice for All!" (and of course no mention of who ACTUALLY paid for it under that name) and within 20 seconds you've forgot everything except for how you were supposed to feel about the issue. This doesn't make someone stupid or dumb or sheepish. This makes them human, the advertising industry invests millions in psychology of marketing, they know what they are doing and it doesn't make someone weak because their natural cognitive functions are being targeted.

patriot45
04-07-2010, 06:48 PM
Yes of course you can. My god stop thinking about this in terms of silly politics, this is not a game. This isn't about them wanting republicans or democrats to win. If they give to both parties, they win no matter what! They don't give two shits whether the person in office has an R or a D by their name, it doesn't matter. What's important is what bills they pass and what actions they take in office.





It IS all over the Internet, but 98% of the American public do not jump and research the funding sources of every political ad they see. People almost never do this. Ads work in a very quick time frame, whether it's a billboard or television ad the message (along with whatever horribly biased information and distortion) is flashed at you, a name at the end is given "Paid for by The Freedom Foundation to Preserve Liberty and Justice for All!" (and of course no mention of who ACTUALLY paid for it under that name) and within 20 seconds you've forgot everything except for how you were supposed to feel about the issue. This doesn't make someone stupid or dumb or sheepish. This makes them human, the advertising industry invests millions in psychology of marketing, they know what they are doing and it doesn't make someone weak because their natural cognitive functions are being targeted.



You do know liberals lie, they lie all the time!
BTW, I want nothing but conservative constitutionalists running the fed gov!

Rockntractor
04-07-2010, 06:55 PM
You do know liberals lie, they lie all the time!
BTW, I want nothing but conservative constitutionalists running the fed gov!

Kicking liberal ass today!:D

Megaguns91
04-07-2010, 07:10 PM
Kicking liberal ass today!:D

Pat ain't messin around! :)

patriot45
04-07-2010, 07:14 PM
Kicking liberal ass today!:D

My buddies wife is away for 2 days and we played golf , you do know that is a drinking sport! Right?
So far everyone I talked to today, except for on CU are conservatives! :rolleyes:
We have been infiltrated!

Wei Wu Wei
04-09-2010, 11:25 AM
You do know liberals lie, they lie all the time!
BTW, I want nothing but conservative constitutionalists running the fed gov!

How does this even relate to the post you quoted?

Megaguns91
04-09-2010, 12:12 PM
How does this even relate to the post you quoted?

Half the CRAP you post is less relevant to pat's inebriated post so do yourself a favor boy and shut the fly trap.