Sunday, August 22, 2010

The power of corporations over the political process

"Recent events have shown how much the interests of corporations now dominate the political process. Mining companies mobilized more quickly than the government to challenge the resource rent tax, and effectively bought down a Prime Minister...... But political systems merely reflect the society which gives rise to them. And we live in a society- and a world-where the power of corporations is much greater than that of "ordinary"people. Corporate power can readily be seen in our homes, our workplaces, our public spaces and our national debates."
Josh Fear
The Nemesis Project aims to support efforts to wrest power back from corporations. We seek to connect the dots between issues to show the extent to which corporate power and corporate interests dominate across a wide range of policy issues and influence every part of our daily lives.

Josh Fear from the Australia Institute has written a fine piece about the extent of corporate power in Australia. His argument is that the power and interests of corporations dominate and control government decision-making.

He shows the ways that corporations now dominate the political process in Australia. Fear's point is that across a range of public policy issues- the super profits mining tax, emissions trading, carbon tax, executive salaries, banking profits and fees and superannuation- the interests of corporations have dominated.

As Fear points out, and as recent events show, corporate power played a major role in the overthrow of an elected PM and manufactured the demise of a Federal government who were seen to threaten corporate interests. Politicians heed that message, meaning that no real reform is likely when corporate interests are threatened.

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