But, maybe, X is not X after all?

I was thinking about the logical typing of “monopoly” where both XY and XZ appear to be X, neither are V. Public and Private entities can appear to be “monopolies” however, they are different magnitudes of X where governments are X prime.

To see public entities to be of the same order, or lesser order, than private entities requires that one presume that everything is a market, that the market is not conditioned and controlled by governments but rather an independent thing.

This presumption is the result of a paradigm shift over whether a government conditions the “market” versus the “market” being an inalienable entity in which governments participate. This is a progression from the developments of early industrial evolution through Adam Smith and culminating with the interpretation of the 14th Amendment as granting corporate personhood, with inalienable rights as individuals participating in current events.

However, the application of the 14th amendment seems incomplete. If corporations are people, then they also must not be owned. Either corporations are property or they are not. If they are people, then they must not be property.

If the corporation is freed from its owners, the collective voice of the body should have self-governance. That means the voice of the collective, comprised of the individuals in the collective, should have self-determination unfettered by ownership. However, if the voice of the body cannot self-determine, then the body must become a ward of the state. Either the collective is self-determined or state-run. I doubt this is a comfortable conclusion for any supporter of corporate personhood because it makes corporate personhood internally inconsistent.

If the government conditions, as guardian, the corporation; this is the same as if the corporation is not a person independent of the state conditioned market. Or, in the alternate, if the people that comprise the body of the corporation are the voice of determination unfettered by ownership, this is the same as if the collective is of many individual voices, not the single voice of an artificial person.

Applying the full standard of the 14th amendment ends corporate personhood, which collapses under internal inconsistency. However, even if this is not the case, that one liberates the corporate person from ownership, then it should be clear that the fruit of a corporation’s labor is being expropriated by the owners in perpetuity, making the corporation an indentured servant to the corporate owners. Again, there is injustice taking place from which the corporation must be freed.

The paradigm shift surrounding the relationship between Governments and private enterprise means that people can use the same words but have different meaning, depending on which side of the shift from which they speak.

There are nominally three types of monopoly: government monopoly, private monopoly and hybrid government endorsed private monopolies. The push to privatize every aspect of the government has been to diminish the number of government monopolies by pushing all activities toward either the private entities or, more often, toward hybrid government-endorsed private entities.

It appears that a government-endorsed private monopoly is a the kind of monstrous hybrid that Jane Jacobs speaks about in The Nature of Economies. Examples of a hybrid here are private entities granted special exclusive rights through the DMCA, patents or copyrights. (Although, there is some interesting news about these lately.) These special grants, which are not rights themselves but actually the space offered when the collective, represented by the Government, places an easement on its own rights in order to encourage innovation and creation through market compensation.

However, the market, and life, are governed by laws which are the rules developed by a legislature, enforced by an executive and applied by a judiciary. The market is in fact conditioned by governments. So, if the government grants itself exclusive control over providing some service this is not a government monopoly after all. This is the government removing from the marketplace the provision of that service.

This suggests that there are no such thing as government monopolies, only private and hybrid monopolies. Governments do not have monopolies in the market because they determine the scope and conditions of the market.

With apologies to Lincoln, the Government, like Soylent Green, is People! The people take on the responsibility for a service they require when a government takes the provision of a service out of the market. There is complexity here because the government often contracts with private entities for the goods and services that the government itself has taken responsibility. That’s apparently another kind of hybrid enterprise.

At the same time, very often, when the Government takes on the provision of a service, it does not actually exclude the market from also providing that service. This is another way in which a Government may not have a monopoly even when they have exclusive control because the exclusive control of a Government is not in the same domain as the market. They are of different magnitudes.

This does not even take into account the black and gray markets, which are further examples of how the Government may claim exclusive control of a service or good, but cannot stop the market from continuing to trade or provide the same. In fact, when Governments claim a product or service from the market in order to prohibit its use, very often this makes the trade of that good or service increasingly lucrative in the black or gray markets.

However, in a republic or an oligopoly, there is a potential for the Government’s control and conditioning of the market to be captured by special interests. This is also true when expansive hybridization occurs, because those entities with endorsed power in the market can exert government-like powers over others in the market, often without the appropriate public oversight to those powers.

Republics and oligopolies limit the scope the franchise, and therefore concentrate influence and participation in the Government away from the population into the hands of special, in this case economic, interests.

Either the law (which is an extension of a Government’s conditioning on the market and of life) apply to corporations or they do not. If they do, then the Government actions in the market are of a different order of magnitude than those of other entities. In this case, X is not X. Again, this suggests that there are no government monopolies, only private and hybrid monopolies. The law both conditions and protects corporations in the market. If not one then neither.