Corporate social responsibility as corporate welfare

Walter Olson and blogger Professor Bainbridge make the case that the notion of “Corporate Social Responsibility” can be a smoke screen for efforts to kill smaller competitors.

Olson notes:

Surprisingly or otherwise, some big business groups like the Grocery Manufacturers of America have allied with consistent Big Government advocacy groups like the Consumer Federation of America and Center for Science in the Public Interest to push S. 510, the food safety bill pending before the Senate….

Bainbridge comments:

Being “socially responsible” often has costs. Often those costs don’t scale. As a result, they tend to be borne disproportionately by small and medium size businesses. Which is why big business loves it when government mandates some purportedly socially responsible law. It creates barriers to entry making it tough for new competitors to succeed.

If your interest is piqued, check out my writings on food safety, toy safety, ranching regulations, tax-preparation regulations, minimum wage, tobacco regulation, and employer mandates to name a few examples.

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