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The functions of the lobbying industries

Before the industrial era, was the agrarian era, when the chief type of property whose inheritances determined the aristocracy consisted of land.  With the onset of industrialization, after around 1600, corporate stock emerged increasingly to become the chief form of property whose inheritance determined the aristocracy. No longer was the aristocracy the possessor of the landed estates, which collectively constituted the given nation; the aristocracy increasingly became instead the possessor of the vast corporations, which collectively controlled the nation’s economy. Instead of a nation consisting primarily of its land, it came to consist increasingly of its corporations.

However, just as there was an agrarian-era conflict between the masters and their serfs; that is, between the aristocrats and the public; there came now to be an industrial-era conflict between the corporate owners and their hired servers; that is, between the aristocrats and their workers.

In both eras, there has been this same conflict for control of the government, or of the “State” – the body-politic. Dictatorships during the agrarian era were kingdoms, in which the owners of the landed estates chose the king or equivalent monarch as the supreme ruler. Dictatorships during the industrial era are instead nations, in which the owners of the corporations choose the Duce, Fuehrer, Shah, or other supreme ruler.

Both during the agrarian era, and during the industrial era, there have been political movements for the public, or the demos, to control the government, via democracy – no dictatorship at all. The methods whereby the aristocracy crushes the public have changed with the transition from feudalism (agrarian-era dictatorships) to fascism (industrial-era dictatorships). Whereas formerly, the method was the simple debt-bondage of the serf to his master, backed up by the military and police, it now became the aristocracy’s lobbying industries, which purchase the votes from the supposed representatives of the people or “Volk” who elect the government, and also purchase the media and the other means to sway the outcomes in those public “elections.” Consequently, there arose with fascism the nativist concept of the “Volk” or equivalent, as the supposed basis for the authority of a fascist state, in order to control the public, and in order to organize the public as the aristocracy collectively wants them to be organized. Fascism (like feudalism before it) accepts the aristocracy’s basic principle, hereditary rights and obligations; and it extends that hereditary concept to the public itself, via a supposed hereditary superiority of one people over other peoples, or “races,” so that the public won’t notice that the real threat to their welfare – the aristocracy – is already controlling “their” government, against their interests. Thus, while this actual enemy is already in control, exploiting the public, it is the “inferior peoples” who become blamed by the majority, the “superior race.” The majority blame those minorities for the problems that aristocrats have actually caused; and those elite therefore continue to be respected, no matter how much suffering they have caused. Minorities become escape-valves for the incoherent anger of the majority. Whereas previously, the authority of the feudal state was based upon God’s having supposedly simply chosen the existing potentates as the blessed-by-birth, whose children would inherit their blessing (e.g., Popes anointed Emperors, who could then pass on to an “heir to the throne” their power); the authority of the fascist state has come to rest instead upon the Volk or “race,” whom fascist leaders claim to represent. Aristocrats are hardly noticed in fascism, they are behind the scenes; whereas aristocrats were “nobility” – highly noticed and publicly honored – in feudalism.

The functions of the lobbying industries in fascism are, thus, as representatives of the aristocracy, to bribe politicians, and/or to control the public’s votes or vote-counting, so as to achieve effective control over the nominal representatives of the Volk or “the people,” whose interests the state supposedly advances, like a “Big Brother.” The news-media are controlled by the aristocracy, in order to sway the public toward voting for the people whom aristocrats want to write and enforce laws; and, so, the “free press” represent actually the aristocracy, not the public (who, after all, don’t own the press, and who mainly want to be entertained). This dual function of lobbying – buying the government, and fooling the public – is the successor to that of the feudal era’s military and clergy, which formerly retained the aristocracy’s control through the application of sheer brute force, military arms (which existed even before there was any “press” whatsoever). In that era, physical force, using violence and the threat of violence, predominated over mental force, using deception. Clergy used deception, but were always actually subordinate to the military power. During the modern era, the aristocracy’s control of the state relies more on lobbyists (deception), and less on police (violence). Force against the mind now predominates over force against the body. However, the world is still early in its transition from feudalism into fascism; and, so, there still remain many predominantly agrarian economies, in which the police retain their role as the primary means by which aristocrats control the public.

Eric Zuesse     Cover of Feudalism, Fascism, Libertarianism and Economics

 

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