Cyberpunk Challenge: Mega-Corporations Make Poor Governments

This is for research into my Nightfish project, where I am trying to come up with a leftist / fascist form of governance for Triumph City. I’m not sure how authoritarian I want my gov to be, but already the plan is to have police militarized but de-funded, with neighborhoods acting more like semi-independent city states than one cohesive city backdrop. In this case, more freedom means more violence by the poor and destitute on the streets, kind of like what we see now in Minneapolis, Portland and Seattle.

The first thing I thought of, when I heard the part about how corps won’t work in the large scale, was mining towns where the owners would sell goods to the miners at outrageous prices, and get away with it because towns were far away. Somebody in the Youtube comments had a similar idea.

Update: Lots of good comments on Youtube. I especially liked one referring to author Pournelle, where employees are citizens of the corp they work for. I think I’d like to do something similar with Triumph City’s neighborhoods. Maybe my street gangs should be incorporated now?

Description: Can a megacorporation take over the government? Chances are that arrangement would be terrible for everyone. In Incoming, The Templin Institute discusses the theories and ideas found across alternate worlds.


Mining corporations found and run towns for their employees, often they employ some private security. So in a small scale this happens all the time. The more remote this mining town is, the less influence a country will have over this town. In a scenario of space mining the independence could be nearly complete. Over time one of these independent mining towns could grow into a mega city. The question would be if the corporation would still control it or even want to control it. – Karsten Schuhmann

I mean, megacorps are literally just 1/1 ripoffs of medieval merchant republics that have existed all throughout Southern Europe and some places in Northern Europe, and they’ve lasted for hundreds of years before dying off. – Ghastly Ghandi

You better start believing in Megacorporation dystopias, you’re in one – X-Ray-Oh

“These corporations pale in comparison to the worlds nations” Pepsico in 1989: Buys 17 submarines, cruiser, and a friget from USSR – Alex C

I find it strange that you didn’t mention the Venetian Empire (or any other merchant republics), which was basically an empire made by merchants. – bendkok

Templeton institute: “Trying to expand into every product or service is nearly impossible”. Me: “tell that to Walmart and Amazon…” – Persephales

In some of his novels, Jerry Pournelle, a very good and prolific science fiction writer, has corporations being sovereign nation-states, with their employees being citizens of the corporate state. – Walter Johnson

I believe Star Wars did it right with the Trade Federation, Techno Union and InterGalactic Banking Clan when it comes to mega corporations. They were all conglomerates and colonized large swathes of the Outer Rim akin to the East India Company and even received seats in the Galactic Senate. With the onset of the Separatist Crisis and subsequent Clone Wars they backed the Confederacy of Independent Systems as it was in their best interests and their heads served among the Separatist Council. – James Murray

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