The seven or so major news organizations have no problem with coordinating their coverage so as to black out certain news stories. Sometimes like back when the bailout of 2008 was being proposed they blocked all disagreement. Today the major news organizations are blacking out coverage of the Occupy Wall Street Protests.
A recurring sentiment of the protestors is concern over too much greed on the part of corporations. The protestors are young and lack experience in identifying the causes of problems. They are absolutely right that a great injustice is being done. They can feel it in their bones but they honestly don’t know what the problem is.
Self interest and greed are not the same thing. Greed is stronger than self interest and breaks moral and ethical boundaries that society puts in place. A business that sells as much of a product as is humanly possible is no more greedy than the consumer who buys gas at the station with the lowest prices. In economics, folks who expect others to act any way other than in self interest will always be disappointed.
When businesses cheat by breaking laws, that is greed and outside what is allowed in a free market. When businesses use the legislative process to create demand for their product or to create markets, that is greed also. When businesses convince the Federal Reserve to increase the money supply as a means of bolstering profit margins that is greed. When monetary policy holds prices up when they would otherwise fall, that has the effect of reducing the real wages of working Americans.
Corporations do in fact use government to steal from the general population. News organizations benefit greatly from the status quo so they black out news that will upset their apple cart. News organizations present themselves as being objective. Fox News constantly claims to be fair and balanced. Publicly claiming to be one thing when you are another, for you own profit, is immoral and thus constitutes greed.
The protestors are on to something but don’t yet know how their accusations apply. When a country faces a severe financial calamity, the knee jerk response is to blame it on capitalism and free markets. The problem is always actually caused by the corruption of capitalism and government failing to maintain a fair playing field.
The act of blacking out news stories is incredibly destructive. The civil discontent is real and thinking it just needs to be stifled will only make it worse and possibly result in violence. The naïve protestors remind me of the anti war protestors of the 1960’s. They were naïve and inexperienced but sensed something was wrong. Like today’s protestors they were not getting any unfiltered information. They hit the streets, stayed there and eventually the truth started coming out. These protests are just getting started.
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