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Politics, Videos

Who Exploits You More: Capitalists or Cronies?

Posted: July 22, 2012 at 8:30 am   /   by

As a followup to the previous post, in which we discuss how big government creates crony capitalism, here is a video that explains the basics of that concept.

Money quote:

“We need to ask ourselves, If we really want to decrease exploitation in the world, is increasing the power of the state really the best way to do it?”


One common claim is that capitalism exploits the masses for the benefit of the few. Many people who think capitalism exploits workers advocate increasing government power over the economy. Professor Matt Zwolinski suggests, however, that government power may be more exploitative than free-market capitalism. After all, in the marketplace, individuals have power over how they spend their money. The government, however, possesses the power to coerce citizens to pay for policies or programs they may not support, like bank bailouts. Zwolinski argues that bigger government makes citizens more vulnerable to exploitation.


See also our post on Schools of Thought in Classical Liberalism, Part 3: Public Choice

To learn why we are posting this series, click our introduction here.


Government grows and grows. Why? Is there any way to limit government? Dr. Ashford explores the intellectual school known as “public choice.” Public choice theorists believe that politicians are self-interested, meaning they have a vested interest in growing government beyond its proper, limited size. This means that small, concentrated groups (like industry lobbying associations) yield tremendous power over the politics. This leads to subsidies and tax breaks for politically favored industries.

Textual summary . . .

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Christopher Cook

Christopher Cook

Managing Editor at Western Free Press
Christopher Cook is a writer, editor, and political commentator. He is the president of Castleraine, Inc., a consulting firm providing a diverse array of services to corporate, public policy, and not-for-profit clients.

Ardently devoted to the cause of human freedom, he has worked at the confluence of politics, activism, and public policy for more than a decade. He co-wrote a ten-part series of video shorts on economics, and has film credits as a researcher on 11 political documentaries, including Citizens United's notorious film on Hillary Clinton that became the subject of a landmark Supreme Court decision. He is the founder of several activist endeavors, including (now a part of Western Free Press) and He is currently the managing editor of and principal contributor to
Christopher Cook

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Who Exploits You More: Capitalists or Cronies?