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This article is about the idea of government dominated by corporate business interests. For the concept of the state and its dominant interests in a capitalist system, see Capitalist state. For capitalist economies dominated by corporations, see Corporate capitalism.

Corporatocracy /ˌkɔrpərəˈtɒkrəsi/, is a term used as an economic and political system controlled by corporations or corporate interests.[1] It is a generally pejorative term often used by critics of the current economic situation in a particular country, especially the United States.[2][3] This is different from corporatism, which is the organisation of society into groups with common interests. Corporatocracy as a term tends to be used by liberal and left-leaning critics, but also some economic libertarian critics and other political observers across the political spectrum.[2][4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12][13][14][15][16] Economist Jeffrey Sachs described the United States as a corporatocracy in his book The Price of Civilization.[17] He suggested that it arose from four trends: weak national parties and strong political representation of individual districts, the large U.S. military establishment after World War II, big corporate money financing election campaigns, and globalization tilting the balance away from workers.[17]

This collective is what author C Wright Mills called the Power Elite, wealthy individuals who hold prominent positions in corporatocracies. They control the process of determining a society's economic and political policies.[18]

The concept has been used in explanations of bank bailouts, excessive pay for CEOs, as well as complaints such as the exploitation of national treasuries, people, and natural resources.[19] It has been used by critics of globalization,[20] sometimes in conjunction with criticism of the World Bank[21] or unfair lending practices,[19] as well as criticism of "free trade agreements".[20]

Historical corporatocracies[edit]

Protester holding Adbusters Corporate American Flag at Bush's 2nd inauguration, Washington DC.

Corporations have held the right to vote in some jurisdictions. For example, Livery Companies currently appoint most of the voters for the City of London Corporation, which is the municipal government for the area centered on the financial district.

Fictional corporatocracies[edit]

See also[edit]



  1. ^ "Corporatocracy". Oxford Dictionaries. Retrieved May 29, 2012. "/ˌkôrpərəˈtäkrəsē/ .... a society or system that is governed or controlled by corporations:" 
  2. ^ a b Jamie Reysen (October 4, 2011). "At Boston's Dewey Square, a protest of varied voices". Boston Globe. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "... Corporatocracy is the new Fascism ..." 
  3. ^ Will Storey (October 6, 2011). "D.C. Occupied, More or Less". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "... we’ve surrendered our nation to a corporatocracy ..." 
  4. ^ Linda A. Mooney; David Knox; Caroline Schacht (2009). Understanding Social Problems. Cengage Learning. p. 256. ISBN 9780495504283. 
  5. ^ Bruce E. Levine (March 16, 2011). "The Myth of U.S. Democracy and the Reality of U.S. Corporatocracy". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2012-01-10. "Americans are ruled by a corporatocracy: a partnership of "too-big-to-fail" corporations, the extremely wealthy elite, and corporate-collaborator government officials." 
  6. ^ David Sirota (November 17, 2010). "The Most Honest -- and Disturbing -- Admission About the Corporatocracy I've Ever Seen". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  7. ^ Will Oremus (Oct 19, 2011). "OWS Protesters May Demand "Robin Hood" Tax: The magazine that sparked the protests calls for a 1-percent levy on financial transactions.". Slate Magazine. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  8. ^ Scott Manley (March 3, 2011). "Letters to the editor: Union busting". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  9. ^ Robert Koehler (December 18, 2011). "The language of empire: In official statements and in media reporting, continued war and ongoing American domination are a given". Baltimore Sun. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "... the corporatocracy and its subservient media. ..." 
  10. ^ Carl Gibson (November 2, 2011). "The Corporatocracy Is the 1 Percent". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "Note: spokesman and organizer for US Uncut" 
  11. ^ Andy Webster (November 10, 2011). "Yearning to Breathe Free on the Web". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  12. ^ GrrlScientist (3 November 2011). "GrrlScientist + Cancer". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  13. ^ Naomi Wolf (5 November 2011). "How to Occupy the moral and political high ground: The worldwide protest can be a critical force for change if it follows some simple rules". The Guardian. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "... one per cent – a corporatocracy that, without transparency or accountability, ..." 
  14. ^ Naomi Wolf (2011-11-01). "The people versus the police". China Daily. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "... Their enemy is a global "corporatocracy" that has purchased governments and legislatures ..." 
  15. ^ Anita Simons (October 24, 2011). "Occupy Wall Street will go down in history". Maui News. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "... we all have different personal objectives, such as ending corporatocracy, ..." 
  16. ^ Katy Steinmetz (November 9, 2011). "Wednesday Words: Herman’s ‘Cain-Wreck,’ Male Cleavage and More". Time Magazine. Retrieved 2012-01-04. "...Occupy vocab: corporatocracy. ..." 
  17. ^ a b Sachs, Jeffrey (2011). The Price of Civilization. New York: Random House. pp. 105, 106, 107. ISBN 978-1-4000-6841-8. 
  18. ^ Doob, Christopher (2013). Social Inequality and Social Stratification (1st ed. ed.). Boston: Pearson. p. 143. 
  19. ^ a b John Perkins (March 2, 2011). "Ecuador: Another Victory for the People". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  20. ^ a b Roman Haluszka (Nov 12, 2011). "Understanding Occupy’s message". Toronto Star. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 
  21. ^ Andy Webster (August 14, 2008). "Thoughts on a ‘Corporatocracy’". The New York Times. Retrieved 2012-01-04. 

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corporatocracy — Please support Wikipedia.
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48 news items

Corvallis Gazette Times
Wed, 09 Jul 2014 07:03:15 -0700

By their decisions on the Citizens United, McCutcheon, and Hobby Lobby cases, the five Republican-appointed members of the U.S. Supreme Court: Antonin Scalia, Clarence Thomas, Anthony Kennedy, Samuel Alito and Chief Justice John Roberts, have ...

International Business Times UK

International Business Times UK
Mon, 28 Jul 2014 02:00:00 -0700

Lee Shepard, another editor at Tax Notes, describes the process as part of the "corporatocracy", which is nothing less than a global trade war taking place under the guise of taxation. US Treasury Losses. A nonpartisan congressional research panel has ...


Fri, 25 Jul 2014 07:23:51 -0700

Despite being considered by many to be a corporatocracy, the United States let down its corporate overlords by ranking only second by agreeing to the statement at a rate of 65%. It's still way more trusting of big business than the 77% who agree worldwide.
Thu, 24 Jul 2014 11:14:19 -0700

... can Industry Canada just ignore what would happen to our property values?" said Vince Thompson. Good question. What to call this shift away from democracy and protection of citizens? When profit trumps all, another step is taken toward ...
Omaha World-Herald
Thu, 03 Jul 2014 23:00:00 -0700

Its campaign of replacing our Jeffersonian democracy with a corporatocracy — sponsored by and sold to the highest bidder — continues unabated. The entire left-right debate is no longer relevant — it's over, and has been replaced with a new paradigm ...
The Missoulian
Mon, 21 Jul 2014 08:05:57 -0700

Missoula is an amazing place to live because its residents feel safe. We feel safe to live the life we love. We feel safe to walk by ourselves, take our children on local trails, and enjoy the community events that make Missoula a beautiful place ...


Thu, 10 Jul 2014 13:01:24 -0700

Whether one uses the term Corporatocracy, Corporatism, Corporate Fascism, or the Corporate State, these terms all mean a complete merger of the corporations with the state. One can also argue that a Plutocracy or Oligarchy in a capitalistic system also ...
The Missoulian
Tue, 15 Jul 2014 08:24:13 -0700

Domestically, this country has a clear-cut choice: answer the social/economic needs of citizens or have limited government. We can't have both. Both could be seen as extremes on a continuum. Most of this country, I believe, desire something in the ...

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