The Case Against Crony Capitalism
Capitalism is a wonderful system that uses free competition to reduce prices, develop new technologies, and meet the needs of consumers. Crony capitalism, however, is a very different animal that uses government to limit competition and shaft the consumer.
Take, for example, the healthcare industry. Pharmaceutical companies develop and market a drug. They have a patent which allows them to be the exclusive source of the drugs for a number of years. When the end of that exclusivity approaches, however, they often add an ingredient so the clock starts running all over again on their drug. When that happens, it’s usually because of a cozy relationship with government regulators fostered by lobbyists.
The veterinary industry has lobbyists as well. They fan out to all fifty states to promote legislation which forces pet owners to buy from them. A couple of decades ago anyone could buy rabies vaccine from suppliers and inoculate their own pets or farm animals. Now, however, over half the states have enacted laws which make that illegal. The vaccine is now supposedly too dangerous to be used by non-veterinarians.
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