Why the focus of the Republican business lobby's power in the areas of tax cuts and deregulation alone? Why the lack of concern for business complaints about "immigration crackdown[s]... tariff wars... government shutdowns"? One large piece of the answer, I think, is gerentocracy—the transformation of the Republican base, even the rich base, into a group of relatively old people who no longer see change as their potential friend and entrepreneurship as even possible for them, but who seek solely to hold on to their rents: Edward Luce: The Fading of the US Multinational Lobby: "When Apple’s iPhone sales undershoot, as they did last week, China suffers. Or so the theory goes.... What is bad for some of America’s biggest brands is apparently good for its president. It is hard to overstate the departure from how US presidents normally behave...

...Yet the clout of the most powerful US business lobbies was in decline before Mr Trump took the job. He has only crystallised this. Groups such as the Chamber of Commerce, and the Business Roundtable, complain loudly about Mr Trump’s immigration crackdown, his tariff wars and government shutdowns. The White House pays scant attention. Theirs was a Faustian bargain. Business pocketed Mr Trump’s corporate tax cut last year—and the rolling deregulation. They must swallow the rest. It is not as though Mr Trump lacks business friends. But they differ from the traditional crowd. Almost none run publicly listed companies. They tend to be property developers, private equity billionaires, casino magnates, and heads of family-owned companies. They swim in different waters to C-suite executives. Many are based in middle America and cater to a purely domestic market. They are little affected by the tariff wars Mr Trump has unleashed. Nor do they worry about public relations. Apple and Nike may oppose a US state when it bans transgender bathrooms, or restricts gay rights. Their stakeholder reputation demands it. America’s multinational companies remain staunch internationalists. Mr Trump’s friends are nationalist-populists. Diversity and inclusion are not obligatory...


#noted

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