Wednesday, December 25, 2013

The Business Of Environmental Solidarity

This from a Power Point presentation made by Stratfor, the private intelligence company that does millions in business with corporations and US government agencies. It is part of a huge trove of hacked Stratfor documets handed over to Wikileaks that have been gradually being released.

The presentation was for oil companies on how to deal with their environmentalist opposition. It classifies environmental groups in categories and talks about their methods and how the oil companies can counter them. The chart below covers what Stratfor calls Radical groups. As Stratfor lays out in the presentation, some environmental groups overlap two categories, as indicated by where the arrow is pointed to.

The corporate strategy should vary depending on several factors, Statfor says. Are the groups gaining any traction? Do they have any power? Other leaked Stratfor files have shown that Stratfor, like the US government, spies on individual environmentalists and infiltrates environmental groups.

In the eyes of Stratfor, all environmentalists can be lumped together in the end, and are interconnected in that they stand in the  way of unlimited corporate power and profit. They think like George W Bush did when he said, "Either you're for us or against us."

Solidarity For Profit

One of the things that has struck me in my just under a year in operating a business, a Capitalist venture, is that there is a type of solidarity among businesses. It's not the type of solidarity where businesses people meet and figure out ways to keep down the working class, and it's not that businesses aren't competitive or cutthroat in their dealings with each other. But they draw a line when it comes to the right to profit. Businesses don't begrudge other businesses a profit. They know that another business person isn't going to do something unless there's a healthy profit in it for them. They pay without much question what other businesses charge them, recognizing that there has to be a healthy profit built into any transaction, and that these profits will be paid for by the consumer.

It's on this basis that the corporations who are Stratfor's customers are in solidarity, and on this basis that environmentalists, and all people, should be in solidarity.

Meanwhile my mighty fleet of trucks has just doubled. I bought a used truck that has a sleeper cab. The type of work I'm doing with my first truck -- which is what they call in trucking a "day cab," i.e. has no sleeper berth -- which is a fixed contract with one company, is hard to come by, but general freight, which goes through freight brokers, is fairly easy to come by, so I got a truck that can do both, hence the sleeper berth. I'll have to go through the whole permitting and registration process again, and buy a trailer, and find and hire someone to drive it.

2006 Freightliner Midroof, sometimes called a flattop

I've been in conversation with someone who I think can get good paying general freight loads for it, so I decided to do it now, because it's tax time. I got a glimpse, when I owned a duplex once, of how beneficial the tax system is for business in this country. I can tell you now that it's a full blown racket, set up entirely for the benefit of businesses and not for the masses.

You can argue that it helps me expand the business more quickly, and it does. I don't like credit and didn't use credit for my first truck, but the tax advantages of using credit were pointed out to me when I recently talked with an accountant. It amounts to a big discount on this truck. It will pay for the permitting and registration and buy the trailer. It helps me create one job.

But it's all underwritten, remember, by the US consumer, who supplies the demand that makes the freight I haul possible which makes the freight rates I receive possible, and who pay the taxes that I won't pay that pave the roads I drive on and repair the bridges all up and down I-40 that are being replaced one by one.

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