Tues., August 14: Washington — President Bush today signed into law the Omnibus Protection From Change Act, freezing wages, market shares, and corporate operations across the United States.
“This is a day that will be long remembered,” declared Democratic Senate majority leader Tom Daschle, (D-SD). “It has seen the end of destructive competition, and it will soon see the end of inequality.”
Under the Commerce Clause, the Congress has the power to regulate literally anything it desires to regulate. In recent years, public outcry over downsizing, globalization, and monopolistic business practices led to calls for Congress to “do something.”
“And now we are doing something,” declared a smiling President Bush, as he signed the bill into law.
Sponsored by Senators Ted Kennedy (D-Mass.), Hillary Clinton (D-N.Y.) and John McCain (R-Ariz.), the bill locks wages at their present rates — after increasing the minimum wage to $50 an hour. Future wage increases for all workers — governmental and “private” — will be automatic according to changes in the Consumer Price Index.
The OPFC Act also freezes market shares, so that Coke and Pepsi, for example, will remain forever locked at roughly equal shares of the soft drink market. New businesses wishing to enter the soft drink market must obtain a federal permit from the Justice Department, or risk antitrust prosecution.
Existing businesses must also keep open their currently existing branches. “The notion of ‘underperforming’ stores that lose money year in and year out is merely a racist lie,” declared one civil rights leader. “Now your corner store will never go out of business.” Stores which close without first receiving a permit from the Commerce Department may face criminal penalties.
Companies which successfully petition the Justice Department for a “certificate of financial irresponsibility” may turn over operation of so-called “underperforming” stores to the federal government. Revenue from such “Freedom Stores” will be used to save Social Security. Freedom Stores, which will work to end discrimination, will hire only certified minorities.
There are, however, mixed feelings in the civil rights community, as an amendment which would have repealed the 9th and 10th Amendments, eliminated the state legislatures, and instituted a national system of proportional representation in Congress, failed to pass.
According to Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr., as originally reported by Edgar B. Anderson at FrontPageMagazine.com, “the nation’s greatest problem is a separate and unequal system of 50 separate and unequal states.”
Representatives of the American steel industry also expressed their pleasure at receiving statutory guarantees of market share and protection from foreign competition.
“We refuse to be dictated to by so-called economic science,” declared one politician sponsored by the steel industry. “Americans need American steel so that America can go to war with confidence.”
Mr. Dieteman [send him mail] is an attorney in Erie, Pennsylvania, and a PhD candidate in philosophy at The Catholic University of America.
© 2001 David Dieteman