Friday 15 December 2017

Growing corporate power is a big concern

The complexity of what they do is giving planet-spanning mega firms more clout these days, writes Dan O'Brien

Volkswagen Group of America President and CEO Michael Horn
Volkswagen Group of America President and CEO Michael Horn
Dan O'Brien

Dan O'Brien

The consequences of the rise of corporate power were much in evidence last week. A new worldwide plan to clamp down on tax avoidance by multinationals made headlines on Monday. Europe's de facto supreme court on Tuesday came down against big data companies sending European citizens' personal information across the Atlantic for fear American spies access it.

These cases come hot on the heels of the scandal of Volkswagen deliberately building into millions of its cars systems designed to fool tests for noxious emissions.

Add longer-term concerns about two industries of particular relevance to this country - big finance and big pharma - and one doesn't have to be an excitable hard-leftist to be increasingly worried about the use and abuse of corporate power.

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