If corporations have all this power then where the heck is it?

Peter Walker points out that there's a certain problem for those who would claim that corporations have some vast amount of market power which they use to lord it over the rest of us. If this were true then we wouldn't see corporate disasters:

Part of the idea here is that large corporations have power over markets and their consumers. When "corporate power" get mentioned I sure people think of companies like Microsoft, Google, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, and McDonald’s etc and the control these firms are said to have over their sectors of the economy. One aspect of this power is the control these corporations are claimed to have over their consumers, but if these "powerful" firms produce spectacular failures, then perhaps consumers are not as docile as some would suggest and we overestimate the extent of said corporate "power".

The latest example might be Microsoft's entirely dismal failure with Nokia. And it really has been an absurd failure as this rather hopeful email details:

Microsoft and Nokia created opportunity for companies in need of ICT professionals
1,000 ICT professionals available in Tampere, Finland, for any industry

Recent news about the Nokia and Microsoft layoffs are good news for those in need of experienced and international ICT professionals. The City of Tampere, Tampere Region Economic Development Agency Tredea and Invest in Finland (Finpro) address this unique opportunity with #Tampere4ICT campaign to attract foreign investments.

Microsoft Mobile and Nokia (Alcatel-Lucent) will release highly experienced technology professionals in the Tampere Region, Finland. There will soon be around 1,000 ICT professionals available, with experience of 10-20 years and with ability to build new, innovative solutions for any industry. Especially companies looking to set up product development, and willing to move fast, there is now a unique opportunity to acquire fully functioning product creation teams to develop advanced connected products.

They bought the company, played around with it for a couple of years and are now effectively closing the whole thing down. That simply wouldn't have happened to a corporation that was wielding great market power. And the explanation for why it did happen is simply that no more than some trivial fraction of us consumers were willing to use Windows for Phone. We beat one of the largest corporations on the planet and all their tens of billions of expenditure just by saying "Nah, think I'll have that one over there instead, ta very much." 

The notion of great corporate power over us consumers doesn't really stand up to close examination.