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What if corporations had militaries?


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They already do. If you mean big brands like Amazon or Disney, then not yet... not yet...

But private company military do exist. We had Blackwater which was very present in Iraq. It has now changed its name to Academi

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That would make it more obvious than it already is that they pretty much rule the world at this point. If anybody can't glean my stance on it from that, I'm saying a corporate military would be bad. Frankly, it sounds a lot like a corporate Mafia. 

 

Also, Borderlands pretty much has this concept down.

Edited by Ayyngel Dust
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Depending on the situation you could have a repeat of what's already happened, the most popular example being the East India Trading Company, prominently shown as antagonists in the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, partly due to their unsavory practices. Here's their Wikipedia page for a general history.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/East_India_Company

A prominent fictional example is the Helghast Corporation from the Kill Zone games. They started out as a private company that colonized planets in order to obtain, process, and manufacture resources. They grew so large that they had to form governing bodies for the employed populations, to the point they eventually became independent and founded their own civilization. There's more to them but they weren't exactly a company after that.

It's much more difficult for corporations to obtain so much power now because while it can be argued that they still have a lot of free reign, it's not enough to crush us under their soulless heels. Regulation limits their ability to carry out the most blatant seizures of power, which is why there aren't massive or common private militaries. If this were done away with, I would largely expect them to fund politicians to the point that they're absolute puppets, and their militaries would be used to secure resources, shipping routes, and ensure quotas are met by supervising labor and crushing protests.

Some coal companies used to pay their miners with their own currency, like wooden tokens that they could spend only at local shops and stores run by the same companies. They created a closed system that got them the most out of their employees and prevented them from escaping because they could never afford to leave. A culture of pride and tradition for your work may also be established to prevent the mindset of ever escaping from spreading. This can even reach a point to where you're shunned if you don't participate. You appease the masses by being their sole provider, and both distract and unite them with things like local sports and faith.

A light version is the standard of our daily lives, but give them too much and you'll see a very oppressed society.

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5 minutes ago, Metal Brony 42 said:

I'd rather deal with a big company than a government. Think about it, would you rather deal with Amazon customer service or the IRS?

IRS has absolutely nothing to do with the military so this point is frankly moot.

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23 minutes ago, Metal Brony 42 said:

I'd rather deal with a big company than a government. Think about it, would you rather deal with Amazon customer service or the IRS?

Isn't the main difference there that one lacks the capacity to exert force? If Amazon could send troops to your house...

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4 minutes ago, Metal Brony 42 said:

The police. If enough people don't pay then the military will come in.

The police are not part of the military... :dry:

 

Frankly, you're comparing apples to oranges here.

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7 minutes ago, Latecomer said:

Isn't the main difference there that one lacks the capacity to exert force? If Amazon could send troops to your house...

A company wants your money and they get it through business. The government can and does just take your money. If either entity can become corrupt by greed, then a private business is better to deal with. A private company wants to keep your business. It seems less likely that Apple will fight Samsung in the phone wars.

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22 minutes ago, Metal Brony 42 said:

A company wants your money and they get it through business. The government can and does just take your money. If either entity can become corrupt by greed, then a private business is better to deal with. A private company wants to keep your business. It seems less likely that Apple will fight Samsung in the phone wars.

The government can just take your money because it has an army (among other reasons). Companies don't, so they have to play nicer.

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2 hours ago, Alastor said:

They already do. If you mean big brands like Amazon or Disney, then not yet... not yet...

But private company military do exist. We had Blackwater which was very present in Iraq. It has now changed its name to Academi

Disney having an army 

For some reason that’s a mix of scary and hilarious to imagine 

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They'd sell them off immediately because wars and military campaigns are extremely expensive and mega corporations exist only for profits. They'd pull out of any operation the moment it was becoming too costly. Write off their losses and move on. 

It'll be easier to bribe and blackmail politicians and local governments to use their militaries instead, but even that is a tricky dance to perform. Whomever is being coerced has to weigh the value of money over public support. 

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I'm pretty sure they already do. Our government and other countries as well has been, for a long time, for sale to the highest bidder. The highest bidders are corporations. Its called lobbying. American people didn't give a darn about Saddam, but american oil corporations sure did. (Longest war in american history)

 

Other fun anecdote 

Ultimate showdown! Alibaba vs Amazon!

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  • 5 months later...
(edited)
On 11/20/2019 at 8:39 PM, Sunlight Glisten said:

I'm pretty sure they already do. Our government and other countries as well has been, for a long time, for sale to the highest bidder. The highest bidders are corporations. Its called lobbying. American people didn't give a darn about Saddam, but american oil corporations sure did. (Longest war in american history)

 

Other fun anecdote 

Ultimate showdown! Alibaba vs Amazon!

Lobbying doesn't count. If the military belongs to a government, it's not the corporation's. The corporation is just profiting from it. 

Although, that anecdote was pretty funny.

Edited by heavens-champion
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On 11/20/2019 at 8:13 PM, Denim&Venöm said:

They'd sell them off immediately because wars and military campaigns are extremely expensive and mega corporations exist only for profits. They'd pull out of any operation the moment it was becoming too costly. Write off their losses and move on. 

It'll be easier to bribe and blackmail politicians and local governments to use their militaries instead, but even that is a tricky dance to perform. Whomever is being coerced has to weigh the value of money over public support. 

You're not familiar with Mutant Chronicles, are you? The whole inner solar system in the universe of Mutant Chronicles is governed by five megacorporations, and they definitely have militaries (three of them also look like retrofuturistic version of World War I era Britain, 19th Century Germany, and Feudal Japan with mecha). Plus the megacorporations are the closest things to governments in Mutant Chronicles, anyway. There's also a religious military organization called the Brotherhood and hordes of monsters, undead, and mutants called the Dark Legion, but that's beside the point.

On 11/20/2019 at 6:11 PM, Brony Number 42 said:

I'd rather deal with a big company than a government. Think about it, would you rather deal with Amazon customer service or the IRS?

But what happens when Amazon has an army?

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1 hour ago, heavens-champion said:

You're not familiar with Mutant Chronicles, are you? The whole inner solar system in the universe of Mutant Chronicles is governed by five megacorporations, and they definitely have militaries (three of them also look like retrofuturistic version of World War I era Britain, 19th Century Germany, and Feudal Japan with mecha). Plus the megacorporations are the closest things to governments in Mutant Chronicles, anyway. There's also a religious military organization called the Brotherhood and hordes of monsters, undead, and mutants called the Dark Legion, but that's beside the point.

The issue is that megacorporations simply cannot replace governments in real life. The closest thing was the British East India Company, but even they were ultimately under the control of the British Empire, and they regularly relied on bailouts from the government to stay afloat during economic downturns. Governments are not made to be efficient or profitable. There's also the issue that someone needs to print the money, and how exactly you can profit from that.

The very reason that companies are companies is the same reason why it would be difficult for even PMCs today to completely replace military operations and logistics. The US spends a ton of money to keep its military afloat, far beyond the reach of even the largest corporations.

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(edited)
6 minutes ago, Anneal said:

The issue is that megacorporations simply cannot replace governments in real life. The closest thing was the British East India Company, but even they were ultimately under the control of the British Empire, and they regularly relied on bailouts from the government to stay afloat during economic downturns. Governments are not made to be efficient or profitable. There's also the issue that someone needs to print the money, and how exactly you can profit from that.

The very reason that companies are companies is the same reason why it would be difficult for even PMCs today to completely replace military operations and logistics. The US spends a ton of money to keep its military afloat, far beyond the reach of even the largest corporations.

I was just saying. Besides, Mutant Chronicles is an RPG where there are enemies like zombies with guns. Not much realism to be had.

Edited by heavens-champion
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5 hours ago, cuteycindyhoney said:

Gives a whole new meaning to "Cola Wars". Can I enlist in the Pepsi army?

Not an army, but Pepsi did actuallu have a somewhat respectable navy at one point, due to an odd twist of Cold War politics. And then as stated above, they sold it off, because what does a drinks company need with one?

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Then perhaps we would have private militaries that compete with government militaries; may the best military prevail on the market. However, if they begin to force force people to pay for their "services", then the corporation has just become government; if they have not admitted it already by this point, they are private companies in-name only.

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