Bakan the USSR with ‘The Corporation’ – by Peter Foster (National Post – May 28, 2014)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

Marking the 10th anniversary of a documentary that portrayed corporations as so many Godzillas

Communism and socialism were based on the delusion that economies can be run more efficiently and morally from the top. The left’s moral justification came from allegations that capitalism led both to unconscionable gaps in wealth and income and to dangerous corporate power.

It is intriguing that just as the latest example of gap obsession — from French economist Thomas Piketty — is being shot down, the anniversary of a particularly virulent example of its anti-corporate twin is being “celebrated.”

Ten years ago, the documentary The Corporation, based on a book by University of British Columbia academic Joel Bakan, was released to the sort of copious praise from the same Chattering Classes that greeted Citizen Piketty’s Capital in the 21st Century.

The Corporation, both the book and the movie, might have been classified as hate literature. Their tedious central claim was that corporations — instead of generating wealth and welfare — were trampling over society like so many psychopathic Godzillas.

Mr. Bakan regurgitated the core left-liberal confusion/deception that corporate size automatically equated with political power, and thus that corporations were the “dominant” organizations of our time.

Tremble in your jackboots Vladimir Putin!

In fact, corporations can only become dangerous through the kind of big government promoted by the left, but that’s a Catch 22 from which the Better Worlders would rather avert their eyes.

UBC has been trying to drum up publicity for The Corporation’s anniversary. A note from a perky university PR person suggested “it may make for a good piece to check up with Joel on the state of the corporation 10 years later. What’s changed? How have corporations evolved?”

To provide a little guidance, the perky note included a Q&A with Mr. Bakan. Sample question: “But corporations break laws all the time. How would more laws stop them?”

According to Mr. Bakan, “[W]e are no longer a society that has corporations within it, but we have become a corporate society.” Nice soundbite, but moot to say the least.

For the rest of this column, click here: http://business.financialpost.com/2014/05/27/peter-foster-bakan-the-ussr-with-the-corporation/

 

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