France recently passed a law penalize firms that close plants. As Agence France-Presse reported, The French parliament on Monday definitively passed a law slapping tough penalties on firms who shut down without looking for a buyer in three months' time….
The law makes it compulsory for any company that employs more than 1,000 workers to look for a buyer for a site they want to close in three months' time.
If they fail to do so they could be fined the equivalent of 20 times the minimum wage for each worker affected, or a sum of more than 28,000 euros ($38,000) per person laid off.
For anyone familiar with Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, the news should ring some bells. At the end of Part 1, Wesley Mouch issues a set of directives, including this one:
All the manufacturing establishments of the country, of any size and nature, were forbidden to move from their present locations, except when granted a special permission to do so by the Bureau of Economic Planning and National Resources.
And Directive 10-289, in Part 2:
Point Two. All industrial, commercial, manufacturing and business establishments of any nature whatsoever shall henceforth remain in operation, and the owners of such establishments shall not quit nor leave nor retire, nor close, sell or transfer their business, under penalty of the nationalization of their establishment and of any and all of their property.
Perhaps the plant-owners should strike, n'est ce pas?
David Kelley is the founder of The Atlas Society. A professional philosopher, teacher, and best-selling author, he has been a leading proponent of Objectivism for more than 25 years.