February 12, 2013

Branded For Life

Infographic from: Popular Science

I know it is hard to believe, but sometimes these companies (and others) do some pretty nefarious things to maintain their dominance on pretty much everything in the average household.

It is good to be informed about what these massive corporations (larger than whole national economies in many cases) are doing to ensure your brand loyalty and continued profits.

For example, just enter one of the above company names into the search bar of CorpWatch, and see what comes up. It is usually a long list of misdeeds and wrongdoings.

Also to be found on this excellent website that is "Holding Corporations Accountable", is Top 200: The Rise of Corporate Global Power by Sarah Anderson and John Cavanagh of the Institute for Policy Studies.

The authors conclude: "As citizen movements the world over launch activities to counter aspects of economic globalization, the growing power of private corporations is becoming a central issue. The main beneficiaries of the market-opening policies of the major multilateral institutions over the past decade and a half are these large corporations, especially the top 200."

From horse meat sold as beef, to big banks fleecing the globe for trillions, it increasingly looks like the capitalist utopia has gone bad. Many corporate representatives believe that breaking the law is allowed... as long as doing so turns a profit.

Dana Radcliffe wrote in Should Companies Obey The Law If Breaking It Is More Profitable?, "both individuals and corporations take actions that help or harm other people, and both are benefited by public goods, including national defense, civil order, roads, schools and the like. So, it doesn't seem unreasonable to infer that both function as citizens, with attendant obligations, including to obey the law -- even when it would be more profitable to ignore it."

When a corporation breaks the law we could dissolve its corporate charter and sell off the assets to be collected as a fine. Our laws should make it less profitable for businesses to break the law, and lawbreaking decision makers should be brought to justice.

But what can the rest of us do? How can individuals help limit the "too-big-to-fail/too-big-to-jail" attitude prevalent in the world right now?

1. Don't work for people doing bad things, and
2. Don't buy their services, or products.

Resist being branded for life.


  1. Anonymous2/12/2013

    Trying to unbrand completely, but admit it is a challenge. The one surprise on the list was Burt's Bees.

    1. They are infiltrating everywhere, trying to make themselves indispensable in our lives. But a lot of their stuff is either not necessary, or replaceable with less expensive, more wholesome (but possibly less convenient) alternatives.

      Then again, if you need a battery, you need a battery.

  2. Replies
    1. Morghan, I removed your comment by accident, and am not sure if I can retrieve it. Sorry.

      You said, "Aside from Pepto-Bismol nothing matches anything in my home."

      I say, "Excellent. That is a pretty extensive list. Amazing how so little of it is necessary."


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