Update: Matt Yglesias has a reponse essay at Cato Unbound linked in the sidebar. Better yet is a response to the response at Will Wilkinson’s blog. Reading the comments is pretty worthwhile, too.
Roderick Long (about whom I know nothing other than that he is “a left-libertarian market anarchist in social theory” as described on his about page) writes in Cato Unbound about how the Big Business Right is all about state protection of corporations as opposed to a free market, and how libertarians who yoke themselves into coalition with right wing statists betray their own principles.
Defenders of the free market are often accused of being apologists for big business and shills for the corporate elite. Is this a fair charge?
No and yes. Emphatically noâ€”because corporate power and the free market are actually antithetical; genuine competition is big businessâ€™s worst nightmare. But also, in all too many cases, yes â€”because although liberty and plutocracy cannot coexist, simultaneous advocacy of both is all too possible.
Followed by a litany of how state power protects big business: favorable tax rates, regulatory barriers to entry by competitors, subsidy of transportation costs, and so forth.