Megacorporations bent on furthering leftist political ideology hold “an unprecedented concentration of power” and must be broken up, contended Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO) to conservative host Mark Levin on Fox News' “Life, Liberty, and Levin” on Sunday.
Hawley and Levin discussed the issue of major companies aligned with the left, comparing them to “robber barons” of the past and highlighting actions such as the deplatforming of Twitter competitor Parler last month.
Leftists “are only interested in capitalism insofar as they can control it and use it to impose their viewpoints,” Hawley said. “Antitrust is a very conservative principle...we’ve got to break up that concentrated power and return power to the people."
Below is a transcript of the exchange:
Mark Levin: Sen. Josh Hawley, well, what do you make of all these attacks on freedom of speech and communication in this country now?
Sen. Josh Hawley: Well, you had it right when you said “the oligopoly.“ What we have is an unprecedented concentration of power by these corporate monopolies working in league with the left, I call them the “woke capitalists.” You know, they’re only interested in capitalism insofar as they can control it and use it to impose their viewpoints on the American public. You know, our founders, they were against monopolies, they really hated monopolies, they were very wary of monopolies, and rightfully so, because when you concentrate power in a few hands, bad things always happen and that's what’s happening now, Mark. You’ve got these Big Tech companies who effectively control more and more speech in America. We’ve seen how they want to use that. They want to shut down conservatives, they want to shut down libertarians, they want to take out competitors like Parler, they want to tell you what you can and cannot say, and it's not just the tech companies, it's also the corporate monopolies in other areas. You know, we’ve had, corporate monopolies have come after me, and said that I'm not welcome to do political events on their properties. They’ve gone after other small business people and said we’re going to boycott you if you support conservatives or if you support Sen. Hawley or people like that, so you’ve got unprecedented monopoly power working with Big Government in the left, and we’ve got to break it up. You ask what do we do about it, we break it up. We’ve got to break up the monopolies. That’s why we have antitrust law and antitrust is a very conservative principle, conservative populist principle -- when we wrote most of those laws over a century ago -- it’s very in tune with our founding. We’ve got to break up that concentrated power and return power to the people.
Levin: And you know what’s interesting to me? You talk about the antitrust laws, a little over 100 years ago, the first one and others, and they broke up Standard Oil and they broke up other companies and so forth that don’t have nearly the power of these Big Tech companies. And we used to use phrases like “robber barons,” which we don’t use anymore. These are robber barons; these are people who are stealing our speech, who are undermining our constitutional system from the outside, and the problem is, Senator, I’m concerned that we have one party or one ideology that doesn’t much mind it because it’s serving their purposes, much like Joe Biden signing one executive order after another like he’s some kind of a monarch, substituting his ideas for the legislative process, much like the Democrat leader in the Senate, who’s trying to figure out ways to get around the other 50 Republican senators, trying to figure out ways to corrupt the Supreme Court, and I could go on and on and on. We’re dealing with a different animal now, aren’t we, in the Democrat Party, in the ideology that they’re pushing?
Hawley: We really are. We’re dealing with a party now that loves the idea of concentrated power, that loves the idea of power gathered into a few hands. I mean they really are -- they’re the party of the powerful, I mean there’s no doubt about it, they are the party of the biggest monopoly corporations, they’re the party of Big Tech, they’re the party of Hollywood, of course, and have been for years, but this is the party -- the Democrats, they love what tech is doing. Tech destroyed Parler, destroyed a competitor. You talk about an antitrust violation, the Democrats cheered them on, they thought that was wonderful, when tech was out there censoring conservatives, kicking them off the platform. They thought that’s wonderful, they want them to do more. What they basically want to do is use these corporations as the hand of government. They basically want to have the corporations go out and do all the regulation, but of course have none of the accountability. And that's why I say: this is something we’ve really not seen in America before. We’ve got the most powerful corporations in the history of the world in these tech companies, the Democrats are standing with them shoulder to shoulder. And the solution is the time-honored solution in this country, which is we don’t like concentrated power; we always disperse it; we give power to the people; that’s what our Constitution is based on, and that’s what we need to get back to.