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The Big Ripoff: How Big Business and Big Government Steal Your Money

Publisher: Wiley • 2006 • 285 pages

The myth is widespread that Big Business and Big Government are rivals — that Big Business wants small government, a “level playing field” and a bare minimum of regulation. Not so, argues Tim Carney in “The Big Ripoff: How Big Business and Big Government Steal Your Money.” Carney, a freelance investigative reporter and prot?g? of veteran conservative political reporter Robert Novak, shows how some big businesses, together with elected officials of both parties, are doing everything possible to replace America’s robust free market with a web of government handouts, stricter regulation, higher taxes, and other special favors to stifle competition. The losers: smaller competitors, less established businesses, consumers, and taxpayers.

As Carney reveals, while many large corporations compete fairly in the marketplace, a growing number are all too eager to use big government to accomplish what they never could in the free market. Why, for instance, are Phillip Morris, the state attorneys general, and federal bureaucrats working together to regulate tobacco? Why does Warren Buffett support the estate tax? Why were Enron and General Motors lobbying for stricter environmental regulations? The answer, in these and many similar cases: more undeserved profits for themselves, more regulatory hassles and expense for their competitors – who, unlike the big boys, can’t afford the extra burdens.

Compiled from official government sources, public corporate documents, and exclusive interviews, The Big Ripoff reports the hard facts that bureaucrats and “corporate welfare” fatcats would rather you never knew. You’ll discover:

  • How Big Business and Big Government both prosper from the perception that they are rivals rather than partners (in plunder)
  • How the myth that the Democratic Party is opposed to Big Business helps big government and big business get their way even more
  • Big Business’s long history of supporting tax hikes, increased government regulation, and government expansion — including the New Deal
  • How government regulation and high taxes protect the big guys from their smaller competitors
  • Why Charles Schumer, one of the most liberal members of the U.S. Senate, gets more campaign cash from Wall Street than any other senator
  • Why Enron was a tireless advocate of strict energy regulations supported by environmentalists — and used its influence to keep laissez-faire bureaucrats off the federal commissions the regulate the energy industry
  • How, in 2006, your tax dollars are still subsidizing Enron
  • How Phillip Morris has aggressively supported heightened federal regulation over tobacco and tobacco advertising to keep smaller competitors out of the marketplace

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