Wednesday, 11 July 2012

Corporations versus The State

Another great article from Christopher Snowdon:

A mere five weeks after it happened, Michael Bloomberg's ban on large sodas has attracted the attention of Oliver Burkeman of the Guardian, who thinks it's all a fuss over nothing because the corporations are more powerful than the politicians, man.

The money that Coke spends on advertising and sponsorship surely shape that architecture far more powerfully than anything Bloomberg could ever do.

Er, no. Bloomberg can have the police bust a place and arrest its owner for selling a drink, just like he has the police arrest bar-owners who allow their patrons to smoke. Coca-Cola, by contrast, can put up adverts trying to persuade people to drink their drink. Corporate advertising and state power are in no way commensurate. As big a corporation as Coca-Cola is, its executives do not have the power to caution, fine, arrest and jail citizens on a whim. Bloomberg does, and by God does he use it.

As usual, the whole article is well worth reading.

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