The Old Paths with Grant Allen

The Old Paths with Grant Allen

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6. Profit-Margin Corporatism and the New Plantation

A resurfaced clip from 2018 has been making the rounds on right wing Twitter, and it’s been interesting to see where the lines are being drawn. The clip is from Ben Shapiro’s Sunday Special podcast, Episode 26, featuring Tucker Carlson.

In the clip, Shapiro questions Carlson on a portion of his book and asks if Carlson would be in favor of the federal government banning AI-automated, driverless semi-trucks from America’s roadways.

“Are you serious?” Carlson asks rhetorically. “In a second.”

Carlson proceeds to explain his position based on the downstream societal effects that would take place if America’s truck drivers are put out of work. He notes that truck driving is the top job for men with only high school degrees in every state. Carlson said that the downstream effects of 10 million men, and subsequently families, being put out of work would be so detrimental to society it would affect generations.  

I actually agree with Tucker in this respect. In years past I would have been more aligned with Shapiro, but the environment has shifted, and we’re no longer the same country we once were.

Some on social media think Carlson is being hypocritical when he denounces socialism in his nightly broadcasts but then would be supportive of the government stepping in and banning a technological advancement from hitting American highways.

It’s a fair critique but still missing the point.

Many on the Libertarian right have noted that government should have no say in what happens with the free market. I agree probably 95 percent of the time, seeing that the overreach of the current federal system is so rampant that it takes form filing after form filing after form filing just to get a small, family-run business incorporated.

It’s not fun. I don’t want more government, but I want good government. And in my view, a government that steps in and shields its people from exploitative corporatism is doing a good thing.

Too many of us are still in the 1980s thinking that Ronald Regan’s trickle-down economics are going to save us with big businesses leading the charge with getting America back to work. Meanwhile, the largest corporations and Wall Street-types that conservatives and capitalists have defended for 40 years have adopted every ESG, climate change, and social justice initiative under the sun.

The corporations that we defended have turned on us. We defended them against the unions and socialists from the Occupy Wall Street movement and what do they do? Use money raised from their foundations to fund every candidate and movement upending our entire social order.

And if we honestly think that AI driverless trucks and the companies behind that technology wouldn’t have the same effect, we’re just kidding ourselves.

Consider what would happen if an AI, driverless truck strikes and kills a family of four on the highway. Who is the guilty party? Is it Tesla or another company that develops this kind of technology or is it the software developer that installed the vehicle's driverless system that failed? It doesn’t really matter, because will the surviving family be able to seek damages against these globalist companies that have the best lawyers money can buy and a lobbying team that has the ear of lawmakers in Washington? We all know the answer to that.

In our current crony capitalist system, our government has propped up certain types of corporations over others. The first step before any government can step in and shield the people they supposedly represent is to take a good, hard look at themselves in the mirror and realize that slavery may have been banned with the passage of the 13th Amendment, but the type and size of the plantation has simply expanded, as Wendell Berry put it.

Consider going to the grocery store and buying chicken. Most of the chicken that we buy is pumped full of chemicals that the federal government turns a blind eye to because it’s produced on farms owned and operated by companies that have successfully lobbied their way into the best regulatory framework that benefits them and what their profit margins say they need. The entire post-WWII agribusiness model was “get big or get out.” Family run farms have been driven out of mainstream American life.

Don’t even get me started on the partnership with the big dairy industry and FDA and USDA. Have you considered why you can’t buy raw milk at Publix right now? Milk straight from a Jersey cow? What’s so wrong with that milk? The kind of milk that every generation in human history had consumed until maybe 70 years ago.

It’s quite telling about the state of big corporate food producers and their adulterous affair with controlling governments when Amos Miller, an Amish farmer in Wisconsin, had his farm raided by the feds because he was selling raw milk. Did Monsanto sic the feds on Amos Miller? And I know that Monsanto is a boogeyman for environmental hippies, but would anyone be all that surprised if Monsanto or any other type of company like it had that much sway over a federal agency? After all, one of our own intelligence agencies did kill Kennedy.

One more note on the Amish.

The Epoch Times recently reported on the rise of autism in the United States based on CDC data. First of all, take that for what it’s worth, but if it’s legit, it’s a concerning number.

“One in 36, or 2.8 percent, of 8-year-old children have autism in 11 communities in the country, researchers said in a study published in the agency’s quasi-journal. That’s up from one in 44 in 2018 and one in 150 in 2002.”

Again, one in 36 children in the United States is autistic.

Robby Starbuck, a former congressional candidate from Tennessee noted on Twitter, “The very worst study of Amish children I found showed a rate of 1 in 271 having autism. Some doctors have said it‘s as rare as 1 in 15,000 Amish children having autism. Why do Amish kids get autism so much less than other American children?”

Could it be the seed oils in mass-produced food that are known to make us fat and unhealthy, or could it be acetaminophen prescribed in-vitro that causes autism? The NIH seems to think it’s a possibility.

Back to AI semi-trucks.

Many will likely point out to me, “I seriously don’t understand how you can advocate for the government stepping in and taking this sort of action to save American consumers when they have such a habit of ruining everything they touch.”

Yes, again, that’s absolutely right, but that’s a result of being catechized by the post-modern order to believe that “all government is bad.” The vision I am espousing is the result of righteous Christians reconquering our systems and governments though slow plodding in a type of civil reformation. This vision is not the quick and easy fix. It will likely take years of slow moving by taking one local school board seat at a time, and then on to the city commission, and then on to the State House, etc.

Too many conservatives have their anger and emotions pent up for four years and finally get it all out on election day, hoping and praying that finally getting the right candidate, no pun intended, in office will get everything back on track. But what are conservatives doing to rebuild our lost civilization between each presidential election?

No doubt there are many people doing yeoman’s work, but I find those to be the exception. It’s time to think locally, and act locally. Get off of the corporatism that is creating a whole new plantation in America.

Grant Allen can be reached by email at If you’re interested in reading his other posts, check out his archived content or learn more about him by checking his short bio here.

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