21 October 2019

Stocks and Precious Metals Charts - A Violent Indifference - The God of the Market and Its Toxic Cult of Power

"Behold the aggrieved, reactive creature fashioned by neoliberal reason and its effects, who embraces freedom without the social contract, authority without democratic legitimacy, and vengeance without values or futurity.  Far from the calculating, entrepreneurial, moral, and disciplined being imagined by Hayek and his intellectual kin, this one is angry, amoral, and impetuous, spurred by unavowed humiliation and thirst for revenge.

The intensity of this energy is tremendous on its own, and also easily exploited by plutocrats, rightwing politicians, and tabloid media moguls whipping it up and keeping it stupid.  It does not need to be addressed by policy producing its concrete betterment because it seeks mainly psychic anointment of its wounds. For this same reason it cannot be easily pacified—it is fueled mainly by rancor and unavowed nihilistic despair. It cannot be appealed to by reason, facts, or sustained argument because it does not want to know, and it is unmotivated by consistency or depth in its values or by belief in truth.

Its conscience is weak while its own sense of victimization and persecution runs high. It cannot be wooed by a viable alternative future, where it sees no place for itself, no prospect for restoring its lost supremacy. The freedom it champions has gained credence as the needs, urges, and values of the private have become legitimate forms of public life and public expression.

Having nothing to lose, its nihilism does not simply negate but is festive and even apocalyptic, willing to take Britain over a cliff, deny climate change, support manifestly undemocratic powers, or put an unstable know-nothing in the most powerful position on earth, because it has nothing else. It probably cannot be reached or transformed yet also has no endgame.

But what to do with it? And might we also need to examine the ways these logics and energies organize aspects of left responses to contemporary predicaments?"

Wendy Brown, Neoliberalism's Frankenstein

"The totalitarian mass leaders based their propaganda on the correct psychological assumption that, under such conditions, one could make people believe the most fantastic statements one day, and trust that if the next day they were given irrefutable proof of their falsehood, they would take refuge in cynicism; instead of deserting the leaders who had lied to them, they would protest that they had known all along that the statement was a lie and would admire the leaders for their superior tactical cleverness.

The ideal subject of totalitarian rule is not the convinced Nazi or the dedicated communist, but people for whom the distinction between fact and fiction, true and false, no longer exists. The sad truth is that most evil is done by people who never make up their minds to be good or evil."

Hannah Arendt, The Origins of Totalitarianism

"The fact that these foolish people are often stubborn must not blind us to the fact that they are not independent.  In conversation with them, one virtually feels that one is dealing not at all with them as a person, but with slogans, catchwords, and the like that have taken possession of them.   They are under a spell, blinded, misused, and abused in their very being.

Having thus become a mindless tool, the foolish person will also be capable of any evil and at the same time incapable of seeing that it is evil.  This is where the danger of diabolical misuse lurks, for it is this that can once and for all destroy the human soul.”

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Letters and Papers From Prison

“Technically it was not hard—it would not have been hard to exterminate even greater numbers.  At the time there were no consequences to consider.  It did not occur to me that I would be held responsible.

That [human life] just didn’t enter into it.  I suppose you want to know if my thought and habits are normal.   I am entirely normal.   Even while I was doing the extermination work, I led a normal family life.”

Rudolf Höss, Kommandant of Auschwitz, as quoted by G. Gilbert, Nuremberg Diary

The Market as a Violently Indifferent God

“Each day we are becoming a creature of splendid glory, or one of unthinkable horror.”

C. S. Lewis

"As everything in what used to be called creation becomes a commodity, human beings begin to look at one another, and at themselves, in a funny way, and they see price tags. There was a time when people spoke, at least occasionally, of 'inherent worth'— if not of things, then at least of persons.

It is sometimes said that since everything is for sale under the rule of The Market, nothing is sacred.  The Market is not omnipotent— yet. But the process is under way and it is gaining momentum."

Harvey Cox, The Market as God

"And what rough beast, its hour come round at last,
Slouches towards Bethlehem to be born?"

W. B. Yeats, The Second Coming

Stocks managed to close with a decent gain today, with the SP 500 taking out the 3000 level.

This is just a 'round number' and is of little importance on the charts.

The Dollar and silver were mostly unchanged.  Gold was off a bit on 'technical selling.'

The financiers seem very eager to get this market moving higher.  Is this yet another phase in the latest smash and grab?

The discussion on Bloomberg this morning about Brexit was a caricature of the underlying reality.

Not one thing has changed.  The mispricing of risks and the deliberate misshaping of the narrative continues.

Whom is it that this system serves?   A man of the markets, reshaped in the image of an uncaring and violently indifferent god.

How sad it is, that no one pays attention to the wisdom of history, until the day that they look down and see the blood of their victims on their hands.  And they hear the words of judgment that pierce the facade of their delusions with its truthfulness.

And then they at long last finally realize what they have become.  And that they have given themselves over to the darkness, and are lost.

These violent delights have violent ends. And in their triumph, die.

Have a pleasant evening.