It used to refer to countries with a system where rich persons had more votes than poor, but the definition has been modernized.
Plutocracy is now used to define the "disproportionate influence the wealthy have on political process in contemporary society ... Kevin Phillips, author and political strategist to U.S. President Richard Nixon, argues that the United States is a plutocracy in which there is a "fusion of money and government."" (1)
There is no argument that there has been a fusion of money and power in this country.
But perhaps a better term to describe our system of government today, under Neoconservatism, would be a Corporatocracy, which "denotes a system of government that serves the interest of, and may be run by, corporations and involves ties between government and business. Where corporations, conglomerates, and/or government entities with private components, control the direction and governance of a country, including carrying out economic planning ..." (2)
I first heard the term, when used in a story on the Haiti earthquake, by author and activist Marguerite Laurent. She was the first to suggest that the Earthquake may have been man-made, since American oil companies had been drilling on a faultline there. Soon after she published her theories, the industry went into damage control, and began discussing the oil gushers on the island, that they claimed were triggered by the quake.
After being called crazy and un-American for writing that the 2010 earthquake gives the US the perfect disaster-capitalism opportunity to come out from behind the UN and openly occupy Haiti to secure Haiti's oil ... [a] strategic location and other riches for the corporatocracy... a veteran oil company man comes forward in Business Week to say, and one wonders how he can so authoritatively speculate about the area of the faultline without intimate knowledge of the drillings .. Haiti lies in an area that has undiscovered amounts of oil, and the earthquake "may have left clues" to petroleum reservoirs! Oil that, uhmmm, "could aid economic recovery in the Western Hemisphere's poorest nation." (3)In his annual bluster (once a year that he talks to the press), Stephen Harper cited his handling of the Haiti crisis as one of the shining moments of the year. And yet if you step outside of the Canadian media, you learn that once again Canada has embarrassed itself on the International stage. Only 1.5% of aid came from us.
Stephen Harper was in Haiti to protect corporate interests, fearing that Cuba, one of the first countries to actually provide medical care, might try to lay claim to the poorest nation's riches. He was photographed with our big war machines, letting the communist country know that he had big guns and someone presumably knew how to use them.
Harper once again, used our tax dollars to help his corporate sponsors. And he threatened our charitable organizations, who were actually assisting the victims, with loss of funding if they attempted to criticize his government's handling of anything.
But our Corporatocracy goes much deeper.
The concept of corporatocracy is that corporations, to a significant extent "own" or have massive power over governments, including those governments nominally elected by the people, and that they exercise such power not by back-room conspiracies but by their enormous, concentrated economic power, and by legal in-the-open mechanisms (lobbyists, campaign contributions to office holders and candidates, threats to leave the state or country for another with less oversight and more subsidies.) (2)These latest corporate tax cuts, which are now being sanctioned by the NDP, are absolutely mind blowing. We are deep in debt and mired in deficit, and yet we are going to give the corporate sector more money? What have they done for us so far, besides create the latest economic crisis?
They are like the spoiled child, continually threatening to run away from home. I say pack their bags and put them on the doorstep. They won't leave. We've got the well stocked refrigerator (all the natural resources) that they need to thrive.
But if they want to live under our roof, they will abide by our rules. It's that simple. We are not raising their allowance because it's more than sufficient. They will clean their room (environment), they will do their chores, and they will behave. Otherwise, there's the door.
The biggest problem facing our country today, is the same problem facing society in the lead up to the Great Depression. Income disparity. And to fix this problem, before it turns into another depression, we need to raise corporate taxes, not lower them. And we need to channel those funds into legitimate job creation.
And we need to get rid of the failed system of neoconservatism. But we can't do that until the media stops calling them 'Tories'. When Canada had a Tory Party, everyone, media included, called the Reform movement, neoconservatism. Everyone. We used to dub Reform the "Revolt of the Rich", because we knew they were a party created by and for, the corporate sector.
Now journalists are banished if they even try to call them neocons, and it is doing this country a great disservice. Sixty-six Reformers may have bought out the interests of 12 PCers, but part of the package was not a 150 year tradition.
That is the point where we must begin to educate Canadians. This is a movement, not a government, and it is promising to destroy us.
1. Why do the Poor Support a Plutocracy?
2. Yes. God Knows Some Very Stupid Things Were Done.
3. If the Issue is Not Whether You Broke a Few Rules ...
1. Wikipedia: Plutocracy
2. Wikipedia: Corporatocracy
3. Oil in Haiti: Reasons for the US Occupation Part II, by Marguerite Laurent, Global Research