Currently, the global economy is ruled by corporations. In fact, this is what is referred to as the Corporate Hegemony of the 21st Century. The influence and reach of corporations extend to every corner of society. They are able to shape every facet of society, and they have ties to every power structure and institution of prominence; they are in control of resources as well as the technology to harness them. They can conduct their affairs with little or no government interference.
Corporations exceed governments and states
In this day and age, corporations are said to overpower governments and states alike. They encompass many nations and many people. They are also said to be responsible for significant shifts in the trends of time, from technology, food and beliefs to government policies. It is contended that they have gone too far. They are accused of being, and in some cases, proven to be, responsible for environmental abuse, instigating wars, human rights violations and undermining government policy. On the other hand, they are said to have also contributed in democratizing tyrannical regimes, facilitated the redistribution of wealth between the rich and the poor, provided aid to impoverished societies, saved sinking economies and provided an easy way to obtain quick financing through credit products, like a short term loan or a no fax payday loan, among other forms.
Duplicity of corporate social responsibility
Corporations claim to value corporate social responsibility. That, aside from profits, genuinely contributes to the development of the community they are in. This may all be well, but it also helps develop vested interests. A community attached and endeared to corporations is least likely to oppose their practices, even if they are illegal. Communities become dependent on corporations, and they are in turn deluded with ideas that the corporations care for them. This is the core of corporate responsibility – corporate social control and manipulation.
In the United States, a judge in Montana recently ruled that a long-standing prohibition on corporations giving money to other corporations is against the constitution. This means that corporations, to further their own agenda, can dump money on government and government officials. This would, in effect, turn democratic government into a government for, by and of corporations. Corporate interests would dictate public policy and governmental operations. The corporations would now have enslaved and controlled the most powerful institution of all – government.
With this control, corporations can evade the law, leech funds from the government and have it create policies that benefit corporate interests and protect corporations from public pressure. True corporations have the freedom to participate in a democracy, but that freedom does not extend to dictating upon society and government. Adam Smith, who was a Scottish moral philosopher and a pioneer of political economics, as outlined in Wikipedia, claimed that businesses should be left alone. But it is clearly evident he did not see the extent of the power of corporations.