Tema den globale økonomien: Grådighet, gjeld og parasittisk kapitalisme

Fra Global Research.
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Greed, Debt and Parasitic Capitalism.

By Nora Fernandez.

Global Research, June 23, 2021.

Theme: Global Economy.

"The 2008 financial collapse still impacts the world and many call it a Great Depression. Rescuing big corporations -rather than saving the real economy, made the scams and pillaging seem almost acceptable. The concentration of money and politics, and the power either generates, it is a global challenge that pushes a particular agenda of privatization of commons and of making money out of everything -prisoners, immigrants, women, children, addictions, sexual abuse and that has no limits.

Michael Hudson identifies financial capitalism as the challenge; environmental degradation emerged from consumerism but “debt pollution” he says results from spending while financed by debt. Debt is not wealth, interest and amortization payments absorb future earnings –and earnings are not increasing. Industrial capitalism results in class war (workers v employers) but financial capitalism is parasitic raiding and carving up industrial corporations, downsizing and out-sourcing their labor force while creating unemployment, a war against workers too. The debt-overhead of the economy grows faster than the real economy increasing personal, national and global debt.

Only a growth economy (a real economy) creates value. Parasitic economy focus is on not paying any form of tax while seeking capital gains through ensuring higher land prices for real estate. It exploits us by mobilizing pension funds, social security and other retirement savings to increase the stock market, bonds and real estate prices. Finances manage real estate, oil and gas, mining and forestry, insurance and banking. The savings of workers, via pension funds, have increased but are invested in finances so we never know if workers’ savings will ever be used to their benefit or to further enrich the rentier class.

Upon reflection, the neoliberal project has made it almost a sin to advocate for people and towards the provision of public health care, low cost medications, good quality public education and fair wages everywhere. It has also been responsible for limiting citizens’ impact on politics all over the world and for turning politics into dust by destroying any emerging alternative project. We are severely limited in shaping our societies towards equity, sustainability and fairness because of neoliberalism. Importantly, this criminal project attacks the “collective” –insulating policy makers from popular demands and eliminating state capacity for intervention in favor of the collective; still, state support for financial elites and their corporations and interests is allowed. Socialism for the rich is not a problem but socialism for the rest of us is not possible. The assault on collective actors, labor unions, anti-neoliberal political parties and collective negotiation and agreements has been effective. (10) Domesticated governments, from “trickster” politicians like Mulroney or Lenin Moreno, or from “tough-love ones” like Thatcher, Trump or Bolsonaro, all endorse the “oligarchic dream” and ensure that no anti-neoliberal politician gets into power or keeps it.

Financial capitalism grows in illicit wealth and power while ruling politicians are either allies or pawns. Eventually it became difficult for regular people to believe or participate in politics that are meaningless to them and turned into a show to fool, distract and betray the public interest and the common good. Around the world, with few exceptions, “politics” becomes a bad word. Monopolists win, shaping their image as deserving, intelligent, sophisticated, even visionary benefactors and philanthropists. The poor and vulnerable -women, men, children, ignored, blamed, shamed; their very survival undermined, eventually increasingly invisible. The talk is not about them but about the “middle class” Those urban subjects from Hallmark movies, enjoying their jobs with benefits, living in romantic settings of “small town USA” as successful “writers” or “chefs,” walking their dogs through cute shopping streets and squares, having supportive families, facing mainly the challenge of unfulfilled “love.” While Hollywood remains focused on making money through shocking us with violence and meanness, scaring us into accepting that we humans are not better than the vicious caricatures they present, nor more real than their violent superheroes; but, where is Superman when greedy capitalism threatens us and the planet?

A compliant Media, says Hedges, shifts its focus from the common good to race, and to crime and law and order, while trying to convince us that the problem we face is not emerging from corporate greed but from a threat to national integrity (6). In Canada the Media also ignores the growing inequality, low wages, addictions, and personal and national debt. It focuses away from our reality to either sustain a vision of “technological bliss and middle-class fancy” or an illusory “enemy,” yesterday Russia today China tomorrow who knows? While created visions and threats are both illusory, threats increase attacks on real Asian people in Canada; and often, aboriginal Canadians looking “Asian,” like the Inuit, are attacked too.

In the US, increased poverty leads to increased homelessness. In Canada you can also see men in sleeping bags in downtown Toronto and Vancouver and many asking for money in the streets of every city. In the US people live in “tent cities” and campgrounds weather allowing. A book (and a movie) points to the US phenomenon of the “houseless,” people who live in their vehicles (adapted or not) and move like nomads around the US. Many of the nomads are seniors with small pensions who cannot afford to pay rent; most are white -it maybe too dangerous for people of color to do this. Jessica Bruder raises awareness in her book about the consequences of the 2008 financial meltdown. But Nomadland (the movie) is a fiction much less clear about financial connections and tempted to present (as most movies) a quasi romantic view of nomads as finding “freedom.” But, nomads work tough jobs for seniors with minimum wages that can endanger them mainly to cover living expenses. They are survivors of US crises presenting us with poverty after a life of work; while most are women, the majority lonely, it is difficult to believe they are not forced into this “option.” Individualism prevalent until the very end: our perception of the need to survive on “our own” no matter what".

Anbefalt lesning om temaet på norsk er Naomi Kleins bok Sjokkdoktrinen, et godt konsentrert sammendrag del 1-5 kan du lese her.

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