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Mon Jan 14, 2013, 06:38 AM

The Finance Industry Has Pried into Every Sector of the Economy, and Ended Up Running the Whole Show

http://www.alternet.org/economy/finance-industry-has-pried-every-sector-economy-and-has-ended-running-whole-show


Today’s economic warfare is not the kind waged a century ago between labor and its industrial employers. Finance has moved to capture the economy at large, industry and mining, public infrastructure (via privatization) and now even the educational system. (At over $1 trillion, U.S. student loan debt came to exceed credit-card debt in 2012.) The weapon in this financial warfare is no larger military force. The tactic is to load economies (governments, companies and families) with debt, siphon off their income as debt service and then foreclose when debtors lack the means to pay. Indebting government gives creditors a lever to pry away land, public infrastructure and other property in the public domain. Indebting companies enables creditors to seize employee pension savings. And indebting labor means that it no longer is necessary to hire strikebreakers to attack union organizers and strikers.

Workers have become so deeply indebted on their home mortgages, credit cards and other bank debt that they fear to strike or even to complain about working conditions. Losing work means missing payments on their monthly bills, enabling banks to jack up interest rates to levels that used to be deemed usurious. So debt peonage and unemployment loom on top of the wage slavery that was the main focus of class warfare a century ago. And to cap matters, credit-card bank lobbyists have rewritten the bankruptcy laws to curtail debtor rights, and the referees appointed to adjudicate disputes brought by debtors and consumers are subject to veto from the banks and businesses that are mainly responsible for inflicting injury.

The aim of financial warfare is not merely to acquire land, natural resources and key infrastructure rents as in military warfare; it is to centralize creditor control over society. In contrast to the promise of democratic reform nurturing a middle class a century ago, we are witnessing a regression to a world of special privilege in which one must inherit wealth in order to avoid debt and job dependency.

The emerging financial oligarchy seeks to shift taxes off banks and their major customers (real estate, natural resources and monopolies) onto labor. Given the need to win voter acquiescence, this aim is best achieved by rolling back everyone’s taxes. The easiest way to do this is to shrink government spending, headed by Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Yet these are the programs that enjoy the strongest voter support. This fact has inspired what may be called the Big Lie of our epoch: the pretense that governments can only create money to pay the financial sector, and that the beneficiaries of social programs should be entirely responsible for paying for Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid, not the wealthy. This Big Lie is used to reverse the concept of progressive taxation, turning the tax system into a ploy of the financial sector to levy tribute on the economy at large.

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Reply The Finance Industry Has Pried into Every Sector of the Economy, and Ended Up Running the Whole Show (Original post)
xchrom Jan 2013 OP
Protalker Jan 2013 #1
IthinkThereforeIAM Jan 2013 #3
MNBrewer Jan 2013 #4
Dustlawyer Jan 2013 #7
Hotler Jan 2013 #11
Mojorabbit Jan 2013 #17
mountain grammy Jan 2013 #15
Locrian Jan 2013 #2
Cynicus Emeritus Jan 2013 #9
dotymed Jan 2013 #5
ReRe Jan 2013 #8
Octafish Jan 2013 #10
IthinkThereforeIAM Jan 2013 #16
gtar100 Jan 2013 #6
marions ghost Jan 2013 #12
Octafish Jan 2013 #13
Hotler Jan 2013 #14
HiPointDem Jan 2013 #19
HiPointDem Jan 2013 #18

Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:06 AM

1. Don't cry for me Argentina

I like your progressive message but the terminology of worker and oligarch seem heavily weighted and socialistic. Refering to a century ago it was Republican progressive TR who made change through trust busting.

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Response to Protalker (Reply #1)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:48 AM

3. What is wrong with, "socialistic"...


... that you brought up? The behavior of the banks/financiers as noted in the OP, appears to be the height of anti-social behavior by, "corporations are people, too", corporations. Screw the workers and general populace so the, "oligarchs", can sate themselves with sociopathic joy?

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Response to IthinkThereforeIAM (Reply #3)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:57 AM

4. Some Democrats don't realize, or are fine with, the fact that the Democratic Party

is part of the corporate machine. It's a kinder, gentler corporate machine that the Democrats want to see, but a corporate machine none-the-less.

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Response to MNBrewer (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:25 AM

7. I have been saying this for a long time! OWS should have had 1 issue and only 1!

COMPLETE CAMPAIGN FINANCE REFORM!!!! That is where you would see the Mother of All Battles! Repugs and Dems are like the Harlem Globetrotters and the Washington Generals. It's all pre-determined. They scare us with Rmoney so we will gladly take Obama. Then the fret over why did Obama renew he Patriot Act. Why does Obama keep warrantless wiretapping. Why hasn't the Justice Dept. not gone after BP and Wall Street for what they have done. It's stupid bullshit! Most of the issues of the day would be solved if we actually had "representative government" and a media that was not corporate controlled!

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Response to Dustlawyer (Reply #7)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:33 AM

11. Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding, we have a winner. n/t

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Response to Dustlawyer (Reply #7)

Tue Jan 15, 2013, 02:08 AM

17. Yes! nt

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Response to MNBrewer (Reply #4)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 10:16 AM

15. I'm a Democrat and I realize and am not fine with the fact

that the Democratic Party is part of the corporate machine, but they are kinder and gentler and, right now, that will have to suffice. As most members of this forum understand, until and unless we get the money out of politics, we will just become a stronger plutocracy.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 07:17 AM

2. great article

Really lays it all out. I've been saying a long time that this is a war that is being fought (and won) behind the scenes.

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Response to Locrian (Reply #2)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:28 AM

9. We've been in economic war and thanks to Wall St and

 

many of our elected officials we have lost. Global corporations, banks and conflicted/owned politicians without any loyalty to the USA have sold us and our jobs to China etc. via MFN and NAFTA, etc. It's been going on for decades. I'd really like to say the traitors are only Republicans, but .........


Populist, Progressive and Libertarian for citizens' rights.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 08:45 AM

5. Sadly, "our" govt. is an integral part of this plan.

most of them are corporate sponsored tools of exploitation. John Perkins, laid this out very clearly, including his role as an economic hit man for "our" govt./corporate masters in his book, CONFESSIONS OF AN ECONOMIC HIT MAN. He was a very large (important) part of getting (then it was only third world countries) countries inundated with debt so "our" govt./corporate co-op could decimate their economies. It worked so well that they are now using the same tactics on America.

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Response to dotymed (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:26 AM

8. I totally agree with YOU!

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Response to dotymed (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:28 AM

10. Exactly, dotymed. Wall Street believes in Unions.

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Response to dotymed (Reply #5)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 04:07 PM

16. Yep, Argentina is/was the big experiment...


... on how to suck the equity out of infrastructure and toss an economy into shambles. Oh, did I mention Enron/Ken Lay/Dumya Bush was in the middle of it, too?

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:08 AM

6. How long before they seek to reclaim their former titles of kings and queens,

and family as "royalty". Or maybe they prefer Emperor, or possibly Pharoah. Perhaps not too long from now they will think themselves to be the earthly embodiment of the Gods seeking our worship and adoration. Oh how the privileged have fallen in the eyes of this modern world. But they are on the rise again.

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Response to gtar100 (Reply #6)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:34 AM

12. Sneakier not to proclaim royalty

Pretend to be FOR the common man. Pretend they got their power by democratic means. Less guilt.

The rich absolutely think of themselves as godlike beings, above the fray. And they feel NO necessity to equalize things whatsoever.

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Response to gtar100 (Reply #6)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:34 AM

13. They already enjoy the privileges, such as immunity from prosecution.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Mon Jan 14, 2013, 09:36 AM

14. Nothing is going to start to change until the people ......

get really pissed off and take to streets by the tens of thousands. We canget 50,000 at a foootball game and close to 100,000 at a NASCAR race but, we can't get 100 in the streets to protest. Geez!

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Response to Hotler (Reply #14)

Tue Jan 15, 2013, 03:29 AM

19. people rarely rush into the streets spontaneously. someone has to organize them. nobody is.

 

not the democratic party, not the so-called 'left'. occupy was the closest thing & it wasn't exactly organized.

meanwhile, the far right is burrowing into government at the state level, moving the states toward fascism.

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Response to xchrom (Original post)

Tue Jan 15, 2013, 03:27 AM

18. "the pretense that governments can only create money to pay the financial sector"

 

as they created trillions out of thin air for the bankster bailout.

and then imposed austerity on the population (i.e. death & destruction of individuals, families, communities).

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