Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Introduction and the Purple Market.

It's the beginning of a new era for consumers. Food choices are increasingly becoming genetically modified, special interest lobbyists in Washington are seeking further deregulation of the food industry, including relaxing food labeling restrictions. On top of this, there is the call for "Tort Reform" which, if it actually happens, will relieve manufacturers and service providers of responsibility for the misbehavior of consumers who mishandle a product, like putting a cup of hot coffee between your legs while you drive.

The ultimate achievement would be complete laissez-faire capitalism. The only effective enforcement would be for patent and copyright violations, the rest would be "Caveat Emptor," buyer beware!

I have the impression that free-market capitalists presume that consumers are responsible enough to manage personal health and wealth. I don't know where I got this impression, perhaps the mass media, perhaps a school book, or perhaps the free-market capitalists own behavior at seeking laissez-faire status for the marketplace, but it's the wrong impression.

It's a deceptive argument to say that consumers are responsible, because we are not. We are creatures driven by our instincts and craven resistance to self-control. We are easily manipulated by our senses which drive our unconscious cravings.

Capitalists argue that supporters of government regulation use this human weakness to help the public rationalize increasing the size of government. The ulterior motivation, they argue, is to increase the size of government for the acquisition of "Political Capital" in the form of new patronage employment positions for campaign contributors or other forms of hidden political commerce.

Since red and blue, that represent Republicans and Democrats, makes purple, I'll call this the Purple Market because it knows no specific political affiliation. The purple market is a human condition of privilege, class distinction and dominance through unfettered government policy manipulation. Unfettered by willful public ignorance.

The purple armies that holds hostage the purple market, are the public sector unions. Looking at the European Union austerity measures that resulted from governments like Greece collapsing under the weight of union demands, it's clear that the Purple Market cannot be sustained.

The purple class is made up of all government employees, appointed officials, and politicians. The purple class is killing the rest of the economy through arbitrary cost-of-living increases and outrageous salaries that contributes to artificially driving inflation for the rest of us under-employed, unemployed, under-paid citizens who don't have any benefits.

Where did it all start? An irresponsible public turning their eyes away while politicians unnecessarily started wars, enacted new laws or created new bureaucracies in the aftermath of highly emotional and highly publicized events? An irresponsible public that chooses not to see the long term consequences of buying products made in China simply because they are cheaper? A public irresponsibly re-electing politicians based purely on name recognition, with no regard to past performance? A public that raises and educates its children on the notion of finding a job instead of creating jobs?

We consumers must start looking in the mirror, and making informed decisions. It's up to us to make government smaller by taking responsibility for ourselves and our dependents, and re-evaluating our expectations about those we think are above us in some strange, distorted social order.