13 May 2015

Why There Has Been No Recovery In One Simple Chart - A Harvest of Corruption

"The money was all appropriated for the top in the hopes that it would trickle down to the needy."

Will Rogers, Nov 26, 1932

“Trickle-down theory - the less than elegant metaphor that if one feeds the horse enough oats, some will pass through to the road for the sparrows.”

John Kenneth Galbraith

"It is no exaggeration to say that since the 1980s, much of the global financial sector has become criminalised, creating an industry culture that tolerates or even encourages systematic fraud."

Charles H. Ferguson

“It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

Upton Sinclair

"In regards to the price of commodities, the rise of wages operates as simple interest does, the rise of profit operates like compound interest. Our merchants and masters complain much of the bad effects of high wages in raising the price and lessening the sale of goods.  They say nothing concerning the bad effects of high profits.  They are silent with regard to the pernicious effects of their own gains. They complain only of those of other people.”

Adam Smith, The Wealth of Nations

"What we have are asset PRICES being whipped up as median real wages deflate."

"The problem of the last three decades is not the 'vicissitudes of the marketplace,' but rather deliberate actions by the government to redistribute income from the rest of us to the one percent.   This pattern of government action shows up in all areas of government policy."

Dean Baker

If the people have no money, they may buy no goods, even essentials, without falling ever more deeply into debt.

That is not so difficult to understand.  Unless your paycheck demands that you not only cannot understand it,  but not even see it, or talk publicly about it. 

And we see the continuing attempts by the Congress itself to thwart and undo financial reform under cover of rhetoric and canards, so that they too might get paid by the moneyed interests.

The harlots of finance and economics will say, 'You laymen simply do not understand the mysteries of our science.  Wages always lag in a recovery.'

Seven years is some lag.   Unfortunately economics these days has less in common with a natural science than it has with marketing.   And at its worst, it has become a carney sideshow.

But we might feel better about all this uncertainty if the corruption and distortion that have become embedded in our laws and economic theories, that preceded this and led to a long term secular stagnation in median incomes, had been changed in any meaningful way since the financial crisis. 

And they have not.    But yet we marvel that our condition seems intractable, unsolvable.

This is the root of our problem.  It is old as Babylon, and evil as sin.  If we sow greed to the worst of our desires, we will reap a harvest of corruption.