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Free market security blanket
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Now that Democrats are asking for benefits for the rest of us, the tired canard about "free markets" is
trotted out. There has always been "free" markets for small businesses, the ones you or I might own,
but the life for big business really is different.
If you mis-managed your business, you would go bankrupt. But consider the record of big business.

Since 1970, bail outs of Penn Central Railroad (1970), Lockheed (1971), Franklin National Bank (1974), Chrysler (1980), Continental Illinois (1984), Savings and Loan (1989), Airline Industry (2001)and so far in 2008: Bear Stearns, Fannie Mae/Freddie Mac, American International Group (A.I.G.),Auto Industry, Troubled Asset Relief Program.That looks like a different market to me, under both Democratic and Republican administrations.

Laws like "No Child Left Behind" favor the three suppliers who dominate the testing market (McGraw-Hill, Houghton-Mifflin and Harcourt General). There's a neat trick. I am sure that local Wendy's, Popeye's and Subway stores would love to divide up the Covington lunch market. But, unlike McGraw-Hill and company, they exist in a "free market."

Large corporations don't want a free market system any more than Kim Jung Il. We have "free markets" for the average American and small businesses, and a security blanket for large corporations who decry benefits for the rest of us as violating "free market" principles.

Let's have "free markets" for all Americans. Let companies and banks, and those who managed and invested, in them crash and burn. But, at the same time let's protect and retrain the workers who were the source of any thing useful or productive from those companies, the workers who provide the backbone of every "free market."

Patrick Durusau is a local resident of Covington. His column regularly appears on Fridays.