As a child, I used to play the board game of Monopoly. I still vividly remember the excitement of a â€œGet out of Jail Freeâ€ card and the royal blue of Boardwalk and Park Place. My brothers would be angered when Iâ€™d loft off to using the pink pastel colored dollars for other, imaginary scenarios in make-believe businesses. Who knew at a young age, Iâ€™d be an energetic entrepreneur, only my lessons of business and true capitalism would come from something other than playing monopoly with my brothers.
By looking at the meaning of Monopoly as an adult, I am only reminded how badly its lessons are in truly preparing us for the real world and as a Free Market.
Playing the Game:
Monopoly was developed from a first phase of The Landlordâ€™s Game, which was invented in 1903 by Lizzie J. Magie whom was a loyal follower of Henry George and through The Landlordâ€™s Game she was in pursuit of teaching his single-tax theory.
Years later, a number of socialists, such as Scott Nearing, known as the “father of environmentalism”, changed the name of the game to “Monopoly.”
Monopoly is designed in a way that all cannot improve their properties equally, and collaboration is prohibited. With every move it ends up hurting the other players in pursuit to gain their wealth and building ultimate power. It is no wonder the later patented game was named Monopoly.
(Monopoly Definition: the exclusive possession or control of something)
The Monopoly Game played today:
Monopoly looks a lot like Washington today. Consider us the players trying to make it around the board in pursuit of a lifestyle of security and freedom; what America was built on! Some of us taking risks, some of us holding â€œour cardsâ€ more tightly. At the start of the game, each player (you and I) chooses a token and one player is selected as the banker (president). In these terms, we vote in the banker and he holds the power, a power that has been out of control for some 50 years.
All too often, as weâ€™ve learned this year, there are stories such as the Solyndra bankruptcy. The government and Energy Department gives a politically connected group, (Solyndra) money, when they knew that they had a negative flowing cash flow for some time. Solyndra would funnel some of this money to the California Democratic Party. The principles in the business were handsomely paid. Regular American citizens grew to be outraged when they found out. The money gifted to them is from your and my tax dollars.
As you see, the best part about the â€œbankerâ€ and itâ€™s ruling class game is that it is created so that they cannot lose: Power keeps the playbook and keeps the rule book. Perhaps the saddest part was being told that these entities are established firms which are â€œtoo big to failâ€. What a choice we are offered: they can take down an economy or demand a bailout.
The saddest part? Even though we donâ€™t want to give the keys to the King of the Castle, he simply brings up the drawbridge behind him.
A Free Enterprise idea foundationally credits a business owner with â€˜pay for performance.â€™ When people get bonuses when they run a business into the ground, human nature knows that this is fundamentally wrong. Just like the joy of playing a board game, one should be played that is within a system with gains and losses, and success and failure. We may need Wall Street, but the government should not be picking winners and losers by rigging the rules in favor of companies of their choosing having an easy to completing against everybody else. This is the Mercantilism our founding fathers rebelled against. Today is simply Washington Inc.
Television, radio, and the Internet have shown us an unending stream of this type of corruption in government. It happens in many forms including direct money transfers, preferential tax treatments, price controls, research grants, and trade restrictions.
Once the hand is in the cookie jar, itâ€™s hard to resist â€œone more.â€ The addiction to such frenzy creates relentless lobbying in both Congress and the White House. Most often we wind up with corrupt inside deals that lead to endless wasteful streams of government growth. If there is any hope of saving our nation this is exactly what we need to halt in itâ€™s tracks.
Handoutsâ€¦ a Fact:
Government payouts make up more than a third of total wages and salaries of the U.S. population, which means thirty-five percent of American citizens live on “handouts.â€ Where are the handouts coming from? Citizens tax money and â€œpoofâ€! Printed money.
Social welfare benefits make up 35 percent of wages and salaries this year, up from 21 percent in 2000 and 10 percent in 1960, according to TrimTabs Investment Research using Bureau of Economic Analysis data.
Back to History, pre Monopoly and the Landlord Game
Two centuries ago, the founders of this country, living under the tyranny of many of King Georgeâ€™s British monopolies, rebelled against the British authorities. They pledged that our nation would forever be free of such monopolies. That is the reason they refused to establish a central bank, public schools, business favors, and a centralized government without the checks and balances to sustain a free market. The candy dish has been out for far too long. Just like our Founding Fathers who fought under brutal conditions as citizens and traders, we must bring the country back from a long practiced tyranny to liberty and freedom.
Kassandra Kuehl is a writer and blogger with American Citizens for Economic Freedom (http://truecapitalism.org/), the super PAC for the Tea Party and Women’s Organizations, founded by prominent business entrepreneur, Peter M. Vessenes. She has recently begun working with The Conservative Reader.