Wed Sep 12, 2012, 11:41 AM
deutsey (18,917 posts)
Contradictions of Finance Capitalism
Heard the author of this article (Richard Peet) on Against the Grain, a radio show produced by KPFA (http://www.againstthegrain.org/)
And yet the present crises in the economy and the state could be lessened (for real, long-term solutions of course even more drastic changes would be needed) by taking money and power away from the financial elite. This could be done right now. Incomes could be redistributed through the taxation system—the state could tax the rich, subsidize social services for the poor, and pay off the deficit. As the financial crisis of the last few years has shown, a lot less money going to the super rich would dampen their speculative excess and stabilize the economy. More money coursing through the social economy, through the media of education and health care, would produce a saner, steadier, and more controllable system. What is ethical can also be good for the economy. Yet in the latest act of this awful dilemma, reacting to the recession caused by finance capital’s reckless speculation, the neoliberal state is imposing sanctions—not on the speculators, but on the hardworking people whose taxes bailed out the financial system! Austerity is punishment for the crimes of the wealthy, but is imposed on everyone but the culprits.
At the present time even practical arguments like this, however, are considered out of bounds as viable political solutions by “responsible spokespersons.” As societies decline, silliness rises. This is not an accident of history. When you cannot mention, let alone debate, sensible solutions to societal problems, then the politics of distraction is all that is left. Fiddling While Rome Burns becomes Motorcycling While America Disintegrates. Sarah Palin is a structural necessity. Politics becomes a game of appearances and deceptions (for example, the Romney candidacy). Resolving finance capitalism’s dilemmas would require state redirection of income distribution, investment, and economic development. This would mean at least a new and stronger version of democratic socialism. Otherwise known by the S word.
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Response to deutsey (Original post)
Sat Sep 15, 2012, 10:08 PM
limpyhobbler (8,244 posts)
3. good article thanks for posting it.
Seems to hit on a lot of common themes from many of the other articles we've seen lately, regarding the evolution from industrial-age capitalism to financial capitalism.