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Coca Cola and McWorld

Barber's statement that free market does not neccesarily mean democracy is dead on. Especially in the case of the Coca Cola company. I would argue that this company expanded globaly to escape democracy.

Many American companies have expanded into other parts of the world, even parts where democratization has yet to occur, if ever. Although this may lead to a slight Americanization of the social culture, it does not necessarily follow that voting with the dollar will lead to voting with ballets. Especially when the companies do not follow democratic ideals once out of America. For example, some may argue that democracy cannot occur unless people's essential needs are met. The Coca Cola company in India has been denying the rights of Indians to have access to water by using most of it for production, and polluting the rest.
A stronger case is presented by Coca Cola's actions in Columbia. An essential right in the American democracy is the freedom to assemble. Coca Cola is suspected of denying Columbians their right to assemble by warding off labor unions perhaps even by violent means. Free market may allow companies such as Coca Cola to exist and compete, with citizens "voting" in favor by purchasing beverages, but that does not always lead to democratization, especially if the company itself, denies fundamental democratic rights.


I'm working on a campaign to cut the contract with coca-cola because of all the stuff you mentioned. Are you interested in getting involved? We have a meeting this sunday at 5:00 at Hard Times on the west bank.