Consumerville, USA — America’s largest retail outlet has spoken — they will no longer sell the confederate flag.
This week, Walmart, Amazon, eBay and Sears all announced bans on the sale of Confederate flag merchandise, amid an intensifying national debate.
The irony here is that while the confederate flag is used as a symbol of oppression and slavery, Walmart is also a symbol of oppression and slavery. In fact, they are far more than a symbol, they stay in business through directly participating in said oppression and slavery.
Do not misconstrue this claim that Walmart perpetuates modern day slavery and oppression as an attack on the free market. It is not. However, Walmart is anything but the free market.
Of course, offering jobs to willing workers has a beneficial societal impact, but that is not what’s in question here. Walmart is the epitome of government and business collusion, which leads to the creation of a monolithic system of corporatism. Without the government’s help, Walmart would not find themselves in such a lush position, economically speaking.
20th Century Economist, Leopold Kohr came up with what he called The Size Theory of Social Misery. Kohr noted that the further the owner or key interest holder is removed from the actual product of a business, the more likely the business is to lean on the state for support. In other words, monopolies are nearly impossible without relying on the force of government.
And relying on government force is what Walmart does best.
Without the government, Walmart would not be where they are today. According to the coalition, Americans for Tax Fairness, Walmart could not maintain its employees without government assistance. As a 2014 report from Forbes points out, Walmart’s low-wage workers cost U.S. taxpayers an estimated $6.2 billion in public assistance including food stamps, Medicaid, and subsidized housing.
But the welfare system is just the tip of the iceberg. Walmart has an extensive, behind the scenes history of using the government to maintain its low-wage-paying, import empire.
According to watchdog group Good Jobs First, Walmart receives billions in annual tax breaks. They also receive direct government grants, free public property, and building subsidies from local and state governments for new stores.
Now, to really understand Walmart’s role in slavery and oppression, let’s look at the personal income tax — for what it actually is. When government demands a portion of your salary, this is the direct theft of an individual’s labor. If you doubt this claim, try not paying your income tax to see what happens.
Stealing the product of one’s labor on a regular basis is de facto slavery. Americans have no choice but to hand over a portion of their labor to the state each year or they will face jail or death. This threat of jail or death for non-compliance can be referred to as oppression.
When large corporations use the product of this stolen labor, they are taking part in, benefiting from, and perpetuating the slavery and oppression that is enforced via the state.
So sure, Walmart not selling the confederate flag is great news; Americans won’t be forced to look at this historical marker of oppression and slavery represented by a piece of cloth any longer. Woohoo…
In the long run, however, the target is not some arbitrary rag donned by racists. Sadly the banning of the confederate flag will do nothing to halt this brutal system of corporatism and hate.
The symbols of oppression matter not. When the grand wizard of the KKK takes off his mask, is he not still the grand wizard? When the Nazi soldier removed his uniform, was he not still a Nazi?
The fact remains that the system is designed to keep Americans in a perpetual cycle of slavery and oppression. The fruits of our labor are stolen and then used to enslave us even further. Removing some piece of cloth from a store will not stop this!
Until Americans break free from their dependency upon the state for their well-being and safety, this cycle will continue, and it will get worse. We must free ourselves from this paradigm. There is no better time than now.
If you are looking for a place to start this change, you have already found it. It starts with you. We can’t force the corrupt police state away, it is a product of society. Society must become free before any real change ensues; not some patriotic definition of freedom either, but true unadulterated freedom. Once we become free as a society, the oppression and slavery will cease to exist and humanity can truly be civilized.
I freed a thousand slaves. I could have freed a thousand more if only they knew they were slaves.