10 December 2015

American Exceptionalism: Endless War, Parasitic Financialisation, Wage Stagnation, and Oligarchy

“The financial system itself continues to exhibit dangerous and erratic behavior; the stock market is rigged and Wall Street is a parasitic wealth transfer operation; commodity prices plummet; junk bond defaults double; derivative exposures remain in the dark; community banks are gobbled up; and the holdings of the mega Wall Street banks become ever more concentrated, with just six banks now controlling over 90% of derivatives and 40% of deposits.”

Wall Street On Parade

There will be the usual movement to 'blame the victims' in this, the 'gullible' American people who do not wish to face the facts.  This is how it always goes, and it works because it is easy to despise the other guy, or just hate 'the other.'

Most people are busy and working hard to make ends meet. They obtain their view of things from 'the news media' for the most part.

When was the last time you heard any rational discussion or even saw any of these charts below in a newspaper or on television news program?  They seem almost too hard to believe.

The American people are being fed a steady stream of lies and half-truths from a captive media, and for the most part the privileged achievers keep silent to protect their own interests, to 'go along to get along.'  They rationalize this by burying themselves in the details of their own professions.

If you hide the facts from people, and lie to them constantly to promote the interests of the powerful oligarchs and the moneyed interests, how can you blame the people for falling for the lies? Where is the truth to be heard?

Even now, if one puts up data such as this, the resulting prescriptions for change are all too often just pre-programmed slogans fed to the public on an almost daily basis by talk radio and the 'fair and balanced' mouthpieces for big money corporatism.

Have we ever seen a more ridiculous presidential election than this one?  The Republican candidates are for the most part stooges for big money and special interests, demagogues, legacy pledges, and jokes, and the Democratic frontrunner is a recycled Wall Street party boss who has become a multi-millionaire from the payments received for showing up at parties hosted by Big Finance's moneyed interests.

And what are the prevailing prescriptions for the future:  more war, more tax cuts, less rights to vote and organize, more consolidation of industry and power, less investment in public infrastructure, and of course, more cutbacks and austerity.

Just the right things to sustain a recovery for some, for the elite few.

And if things go wrong, they will blame the victims of their lies for not stopping them.  This is what greedy narcissists and sociopaths do, blame their victims.

I wish these charts included the percentage of the population incarcerated in prison, the number of children living in poverty, and the huge cost in lies and spending for wars to 'save the world.'

What went wrong?  Follow the money.  The American republic has been waylaid and twisted for the very obvious benefit a powerful few, and is in dire need of genuine political and financial reform.

These charts are from Jeremy Grantham in Give Me the Good News, with a hat tip to Zerohedge.