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A View from the Altar / Wal-Mart’s bribery scandal
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Wal-Mart’s bribery scandal

So as I understand it, to build some Wal-Mart stores, they had to pay money so the men with guns would refrain from interfering.

Now, suppose Country X requires the store to comply with a byzantine warren of regulations with every regulation covering a “license fee” or an “inspection fee” or some other flimsy bureaucratic ruse for taking money. If you don’t pay, or if you violate some obscure rule, they send SWAT teams to scare the crap out of your workers, drag you into court forever, and cripple your whole future with a blurry regimen of open-ended enforcement actions.  You never get totally free, though you might be able to stay in business till the next election… maybe.  America is Country X.

Country Z is more direct.  There are far fewer regulations, and you just hand the money to some local generalissimo who tells his leg breakers to lay off.  Once the bribe is paid, you build your store, hire the workers, sell the stuff, and everybody is happy.  Mexico is Country Z.

Which system is more just?  Which is more fair?  Which is actually a better climate for business?  Which is more moral and ethical?  Both governments behave like mafiosi.  The biggest difference I can see is that the Mexican version isn’t really trying to kill off what they siphon from.  America’s ideological Apollyons seem determined to wipe out any American who has the audacity to work.

otherbrothersteve@gmail.com

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