Sadly today I am reporting to you yet another development that seems as if we are all living within the pages of Ayn Rand’s seminal work Atlas Shrugged.
You may recall from the book that John Galt, the enigmatic protagonist, started off as a young engineer at the Twentieth Century Motor Company.
When the owner of the company died, the heirs decided to run the business according to the new enlightened principles of the time.
Primarily, they let all the workers vote on how the factory was supposed to be run and how much everyone should be compensated.
And it was soon decided that “everybody in the factory would work according to his ability, but would be paid according to his needs.”
Naturally, bright hard-working employees soon left; they found themselves working around the clock for the benefit of others who felt entitled to contribute as little as possible.
John Galt was among the first out the door.
And not long after, the once successful company went bust. No surprise.
Unfortunately this is no longer fiction. Because in the Land of the Free, the United States Congress is striving to make Atlas Shrugged a reality.
Their latest brainchild is to set up a new government bank, stuff it full of taxpayer funds, and loan the money to American workers for the exclusive purpose to help them form collectives and buy the companies they work for.
It’s called the United States Employee Ownership Bank Act.
And, straight from the bill, they aim to provide “loan guarantees, direct loans, and technical assistance to employees to buy their own companies. . .”
The goal of this legislation, curiously, is to “preserve and increase employment in the United States” which is still problematic six years after the global financial crisis.
Since September 2008, the US government has increased its debt level over 50% to $17.6 trillion.
The US Federal Reserve has increased its balance sheet four-fold, conjuring $3.5 trillion out of thin air.
All of this was supposed to create jobs. And with each of these being a failed policy, Congress is now descending into outright socialism.
To be fair, people throw around the word socialism a lot. They’ll say “Obama’s a socialist” or something like that. Often it’s taken to exaggeration.
But this legislation– the government effectively sponsoring the communal takeover of private business– is textbook socialism: private property and the means of production owned by the community.
Socialist Yugoslavia actually tried the exact same thing: worker-owned cooperatives. And the consequent failure was absolutely epic.
But politicians never let pesky things like truth get in the way of a bad idea.
It’s time to wake up smell the reality. This isn’t about panic. It isn’t about doom and gloom. It’s about facts, not fear.