Letters to the EditorNews

Big Businesses Screw Over the Small Ones

A lot of my friends are small business owners who are conservative. They see the amount of regulation imposed on them and the hoops they have to jump through to stay in business, and they blame it on the general concept of “government.”

Let me ask you a question: Who do you think writes the policy that makes it harder for you to compete? It’s the major players in your industry. They buy off your representatives in government and rig the market against you. You’re playing a game you can’t win, and they’ll lie to you about the source of your misery so you keep participating. Do you not believe that the little person gets screwed? Who do you think’s doing the screwing?

I saw it happen with farming in the early ’90s. When I was a kid, there were hundreds of pork producers in Brooks County—small family operations. Then, because of Clintonian deregulation, the big pork companies like Sunnyland and Smithfield came into South Georgia, bought up the independent packing houses that determined the price per pound of a hog and Walmarted all those people out of business by artificially decreasing demand until the price per pound got down to like 11 cents, and it was costing more to finish them out than you made at sale.

People lost their livelihoods and the only source of sustenance they had ever known. Mass cultural displacement. Filing for bankruptcy broke the spirits of a lot of good people. Stole their pride. Some committed suicide out of desperation and shame.

You either had to go to work for the people that put you out of business or find other means of survival. It was the rise of corporate farms and vertical integration of the supply chain. They just decided they’d become hog farmers and cut small operations out. I saw it happen, and it makes me sad that people just shrugged and said, “Oh well, I guess that’s just how it is.”

A population trained to act on faith instead of asking questions makes people an easy target for manipulation. I’m asking people to think critically about the source of the problem. This country isn’t broke. We’re the richest country on earth. We have allowed wealth hoarders to cripple society and blame their most negatively affected victims.

They’ll tell you that you can’t get ahead because of the poor person that lives on the bad side of town, but I’m here to tell you that they who hold the purse strings have the power. Don’t let huge corporations lump themselves in with small business. They’re not. That distinction is never made. Don’t let them speak for you. They don’t have your best interests at heart.