By Robert Pembroke
For as long as there have been politicians, it’s been inevitable that they will craft a parasitic system that allows them to control people’s destiny — lock, stock and barrel. And, according to a Harvard Business School study by Katherine Gehl and Michael Porter, “By nearly every measure, the industry of politics,itself is thriving. There’s just one problem. The people whom the politics industry is supposed to serve have never been more dissatisfied.”
Our politicians have crafted an institution that is going to be very difficult to dislodge. I do believe that owners and employees of small business have enough partisanship and the political clout to right the wrong caused by the Republican and Democratic parties collectively.
It will be a massive effort, just like the small businesses put forth when they banded together in a revolution to overthrow the English monarchy. The catalyst for the revolution was the “The Loyal Nine,” who tended to be colonial merchants. The founders were Joseph Avery Jr. and Thomas Chase, who were distillers; Thomas Craft was a painter; Henry Bass was a merchant; Steven Cleverley and John Smith were braisers (a braiser makes portable pans to hold lighted coals); Benjamin Edes, a printer; and George Trott was a jeweler. These men held meetings, handed out fliers, organized a raid on a great big ship, threw tea in the water, tarred and feathered a few folks and then raised a great big army.
Warren Buffett’s key to financial success is to look for an investment where there is strong management, it’s simple to understand and has a huge competitive moat. If there’s some way to turn the political parties into a corporation, he would jump all over the opportunity to invest. Why? Because our two political parties have designed a system to make a lot of silver and gold for themselves and their backers.
So, let’s pretend that the Republican and Democratic parties are one big corporation. The management of these corporations is not the people you see in the media; it’s the people in back rooms, the likes of the George Soros and Richard Koch. Their political action committees run the show. These men are proven commodities and have amassed billions in net worth.
Let’s now chat about whether or not this business is simple to understand. All of us grew up listening to our parents chat about politics around the dinner table and we even had teachers that told us all about political systems. We are a well-informed public when it comes to political systems.
As to a competitive moat, wow, what a crafty devious model that they have concocted. It is called the “rule of law.” They are constantly passing laws and regulations that benefit their benefactors. Just keep piling it on, Nancy, Chuck, Paul and Mitch. As P.T. Barnum is alleged to have said, “There’s a sucker born every minute.”
What’s sad about this situation is that the politicians “cater to their primary backers from the political-industrial complex. That leaves a host of economic priorities, such as sweeping tax reform, an overhaul of the nation’s infrastructure or fixes to the health care system increasingly out of reach,” according to the Harvard study.
Again, my friends, it’s time to man the barricades. Referencing the Harvard study again: “We do have litigation and citizen referendums that can move much more quickly and build some momemtum.” The end of gerrymandering would be a huge improvement to our political system. This can be accomplished on a local level by citizen referendums.
“The art of warfare is to subdue the enemy without fighting … If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles.” – Sun Tzu in his sixth-century masterpiece The Art of War.
Robert Pembroke is the chairman of Pembroke’s Inc. He considers himself on permanent sabbatical but can be reached at email@example.com.