1. The propaganda of the New Deal (malefactors of great wealth) to the contrary, FDR endeavored to re-create the corporatism of Woodrow Wilson, and copied same from Mussolini. The New Dealers invited one industry after another to write the codes under which they would be regulated. Even more aggressive, the National Recovery Administration forced industries to fix prices and in other ways to collude with one another: the NRA approved 557 basic and 189 supplementary codes, covering almost 95% of all industrial workers. a. The intention was for big business to get bigger, and the little guy to be squeezed out: for example, the owners of the big chain movie houses wrote the codes that almost ran the independents out of business (even though 13,571 of the 18,321 movie theatres were independently owned). This in the name of efficiency and progress. Goldberg, Liberal Fascism. 2. Often overlooked is the fact that corporatism, also known as crony capitalism, is hardly restricted to big business. In fact, most goes on at the level of the individual citizen, where state and local government regulates business and entry into occupations through license laws, from medicine and law, to barbers, cosmetologists and plumbers. a. The Council of State Governments lists more than 800 occupations as licensed in at least one state, ranging from fortune-tellers in Maryland to rainmakers in Arizona (Council of State Governments, 1994). http://web.missouri.edu/~podgurskym/Econ_4345/syl_articles/kleiner.pdf 3. In many cases licensing requirements are highly questionable. In California, a would-be barber must receive instruction in bacteriology, histology, and diseases of skin, hair, glands and nails. In some cases, local residency is a requirement. 4. Why? The effect of licensing is to restrict the number of practitioners. A second effect is to raise the price of a good or service. Of course, it also has the effect of raising the incomes of incumbent practitioners, which explains why most licensure laws are the result of intense lobbying by incumbents demanding more protection from competition. a. When an unlicensed trade lobbies for licensing, they always seek grandfathering from new requirement leaving same for new entires. 5. In NYC, taxis require a medallion, a system began in 1937 and cost $10 for each person then operating taxis. 13,566 were issued. Only 54 new ones have been issued. a. A taxi medallion sold yesterday for a record $600,000 - making the lowly license-to-drive one of the fastest growing investments anywhere. The seller was a Pakistani native who decided to retire from his yellow cab career after cruising city streets for 25 years. When he started driving his first taxi in 1981, he bought his medallion for $30,000. 600G MEDALLION NOT TOO SHABBY, CABBY - NYPOST.com b. The value of the medallion shows what a buyer is willing to pay for government protection from free-market competition. Williams, Race & Economics, p. 63 6. But there is a response to the medallion-taxi-monopoly: illegal or gypsy cabs residents of poor and poorly served communities simply install meters, and put lights on their private cars! It is estimated that 30,000 gypsy cabs operate in the city. a. Driving a gypsy cab is one of the most dangerous jobs in New York City. Since 1990, 180 drivers -- an average of over two a month -- have been killed while on duty, according to the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission. One of the Most Dangerous Jobs in New York: Gypsy Cab Driver 7. Today, tens of thousands of New Yorkers seeking to follow a rich tradition of entrepreneurship face a bewildering array of laws and regulations that prevent or stifle enterprise. The entrepreneurs featured here, and countless others like them, deserve a chance for a better future made possible when economic liberty--the right to pursue an honest living without arbitrary government interference--becomes a reality for all New Yorkers. City Studies | The Institute for Justice 8. Washington, D.C. is the biggest surprise....in 1979, there were about 8,400 taxis....almost all, owner-operated. The price of a license in Washington....five dollars.