I called Jeff Bezos a thief the other day, and a friend of mine said something along the lines of “can’t call him that without proof.” My response:
He's a billionaire. It is impossible to become a billionaire without systematic wage theft from employees, among other things. If employees were paid what their labor actually was worth, the minimum wage would be something like $25 per hour. But here we are begging for $15 an hour, which is a number that is not only already obsolete but is going to be too low to live on in another decade or two. So there's one type of theft. It's not what's legally defined as wage theft, because corporations bullied the government into saying it's not, but a crime is still a crime even when it's legal, and not paying employees what their labor is worth is a crime, specifically a form of theft. And every single major corporation in the country - in the WORLD - is guilty of that crime. Because that crime is an inherent part of capitalism.
Theft is the foundation of the entire system known as capitalism. First they steal resources from indigenous populations all over the world. Then they steal actual people. (Even if a company isn't currently engaged in actual slavery, they're still benefiting from it. And slavery - actual slavery - is still going on. Hershey's and Nestle are two companies still actively using slavery in Africa. CHILD slavery, at that!) Then they commit the above mentioned wage theft. But there's more!
Then the corporations buy other resources from smaller companies and individuals, underpaying massively for things they need. Which may not be theft per se, but it is at least shitty. Probably some kind of fraud.
Oh and then corporations massively overcharge the consumers for their products. There's not a thing on any shelf anywhere that's worth even close to what it cost the corporation to make. (Only hand made stuff sold by the maker is exempt.) That milk you bought for $2? Probably cost them 25 cents or less to make, when you divide costs by number of units. The iPhones probably cost Apple $25 to $30 per unit to make, and they charge upwards of $1000 per unit. Then they do their utmost to make the things impossible for outsiders to repair, so if anything goes wrong with them, you have to pay repair bills so high it's cheaper to just replace it! And it's not like they've got a replacement warranty on it. (Well they probably do, but it probably costs $100 or more per month, at a guess.)
So that's like, got to be at least some kind of fraud against the public, ramming up the prices so absurdly. But if that's not clear cut enough, there's all the companies that get caught in lies constantly. False advertising, hiding the truth about dangerous products because it's cheaper to pay off lawsuits and fines after people have died because the lawsuits and fines are always so absurdly low compared to the company's income, polluting the earth and lying about it, and other crimes.
This is the system. Capitalism is theft. Capitalism would fall completely apart if we had some way to forcing companies to stop the systematic theft and actually play fair with employees, suppliers, and customers.
So since the entire system of capitalism is sitting on a foundation of theft, cheating, and lies, and since the bigger the company the more guilty they are of those crimes, I feel perfectly comfortable calling Jeff Bezos a thief. Because he *is* one. All CEOs, all corporate management, are thieves. There are no exceptions, because capitalism is inherently theft. They've made sure it's theft that's legalized, mostly, but that doesn't change the fact it's still theft.
And since working conditions at Amazon have gotten people killed because he mistreats them so horribly (for which there is AMPLE proof, you HAVE to have seen the myriad links citing this proof by now, they've been all over FB and elsewhere), and since Bezos created those conditions and does fuckall to improve them because he doesn't care a whit about human lives, I feel perfectly comfortable calling him a murderer, too. Because he *is* one.
This was cross-posted from https://fayanora.dreamwidth.org/1509072.html
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