Thursday, September 1, 2011

The Crisis Of Capitalism Is Political, Not Economic


I would add with more verve, though, that the reason for Marx’s relevance today is precisely because we are in a once-in-a-generation crisis of capitalism, triggered by the financial bust. If policymakers and their advisers understood this better, Sir Samuel’s remedies would have a far better chance of being taken up. How regrettable then that economists and bankers substituted the delusion of the “new economy” for the rigors of political economy, and still maintain that if only government and regulation would get out the way, there would be a spontaneous revival in private spending and lending.

Simply put, the thread that ties all this foolishness together is not simply the overabundance and over-concentration of wealth among a select few (though that indeed may have played a part in the collapse), but the consequent over-concentration of power. This is a series of stupid decisions, to be sure; but it’s a series of stupid decisions that makes sense if viewed through a prism of rigid—and, in the end, myopic—class interests. As Nouriel Roubini put it, “capitalism can destroy itself.” It’s not pretty to watch.


  1. Unfortunately, we are looking at the situation incorrectly.

    First off, do not assume incompetence when malice will suffice. Many, including the author, are flabergasted that "intelligent" people could have "allowed" this to happen. Unfortunately, getting things to this point took immense amounts of very precisely directed efforts to circumvent the inherent stability of the financial system.

    Secondly, I would argue that none of us have ever experienced capitalism, in its true form. The financial system of the world has been Corporate Socialist since at least 1913, and perhaps before. To argue against a system before giving it a try is ludicrous.

    Thirdly, Marx is NOT relevant. His ideas need to be relegated to the dustbin of history, and people need to wake up to the fact that his ideologies sparked the largest mass murders in history. If someone were to espouse the ideals of Nazism, they would be rightly and soundly chastized, yet young folks walk down the street wearing Che Guevara T-shirts and University profs openly spew his drivel without so much as a slap on the wrist. The cure for the worlds ills is not to revert to a proven totalitarian power structure.

    Interestingly enough, the two concepts of Marxism and Capitalism should not be held up as opposites- Marxism is more of a social/political matrix, while capitalism is a simple economic concept. The governments of Lenin, Stalin, Mao, and other Marxist/Communists utilized many tenets of capitalism. I would suggest that if you look deeper at the roots of the Russian Revolution, you would be surprised to see that they were financed by Wall Street (ironically in the same way that Hitler was funded and raised to power). Capitalism is not the canard, it is the Corporate-Socialists that have prevented the average person from attaining even a modicum of self-determination.

    This current "crisis" should be viewed as yet another plank in the Hegelian Dialectic- create the problem, and then step in with the "solution," which is what was planned all along. The austerity measures should be applied to the governments alone- the people themselves have been captives this entire time, subject to the whims and egoism of their Corporate-Socialist masters. Only by seeing with new eyes can this current situation be solved.

    Returning to a tired and blood-soaked ideology is the very definition of insanity- that of trying the same thing and expecting a different result.

  2. 11:45 you have made a great argument! I agree. The nature of our thinking has to grow and evolve along the lines of true individualism and the full understanding of the phrase caveat emptor . To many have accepted as their lifestyle a casual disrespect for personnel responsibility.

  3. Namaste Snake, you are a scholar and a gentleman (or woman as the case may be).

    This is a time of exponential growth in our knowledge of what it means to be human. To wish for happiness for all sentient beings is to wish for their individual liberation, both here and in the future. Only when we are free of ALL shackles (physical, spiritual, and MENTAL) can we be free. If we are all free and happy, to give and share comes without thought. Sounds simple, and it is. To demand people give to others (through taxation, Socialism, etc.) is not true altruism. To give because it feels good, and is without being compelled through force is ultimate altruism.

    Collectivism is to squelch the individual vibrations that makes true cooperation a thing of beauty. Keep sharing and educating.

    Freely received, freely given.

  4. Ha!@ what afriggin' dreamer! Obviously knows absolutly nothinhg about the true human condition

  5. @ 10:24:

    Are you sure you know so very much about my experience? Please share with us your insights on the "true human condition." I am sure we can all benefit from your wisdom.

    Thank you.

  6. While the freedom of mind talk, to become an individual, is easy to explain and preach, it is not as easy to attain.

    Most people have always been attracted to "free" living in its announced form. Most would flock to a form of life if it gave them pleasure or promised them something grandeur.

    Yes, that means most are already under the impression they are freedom lovers, on the side of good, or here to fight for liberation. Sadly, the majority of these people have no ability to dominate their own freedom, yet alone fight for a cause delivering it to others.

    How could I claim to be free when I cannot control my anger, sex drive, desire for intoxication, cupidity, longing for fame, fear, sorrow, nervous habits, and whatever else may be flawed in me?

    If we can't master our temptation for food then we will not be able to will away our procreative instincts, according to Ghandi (which he did overcome).

    Do people truly like freedom? Or do they like more their right to masturbation, cell phones, tattoos, booze, myspace, cars, and video games? See, it's license people cherish, not freedom. There are those of course who come to know freedom and partake in a free life while pursuing moral excellence.

    We have collectively failed to be free. We have become immoral beyond all measure, and this is why we face our doom now. If we had upheld our morality then we would have continued our free lifestyles. But we abandoned our responsibilities, so now we have to earn our freedom back.

    I'm really convinced more so each day, that neglecting the Creator's will (God, Tao, Spirit, whatever) is the real and sole reason all of this is occurring. It might even be dangerous to project outwards an enemy in banks, neocons, socialists, capitalists, or whatever one wants to blame it on.

  7. @ 12:28

    I hear your words, and respect what you are saying.

    You are correct, in today's world, as long as people have their Twatter and porn, Starbucks and any of the other 10,000 things to distract them, they will think they are free.

    What I meant by my comment is that only by striving for an individual understanding and connection with both the micro and the macro, by setting one's own house in order, can we move towards greater freedom, instead of freedumb. We can then better help others

    To project your own flaws and weaknesses, failings and fears to everyone else is to strip both other and self of potential. This is the same as the hoplophobe that will not own a gun because of their own internal fears of what they themselves would do if armed.

    Do what you can. We are all fighting battles which everyone else knows nothing about. The real battle is with self, which is merely another illusion (albeit a persistent one). Self is also our greatest ally. To externalize our fight by blaming "other" (more manifestations of the 10.000 things) we sap our energy. DO WHAT YOU CAN, a little every day. Nobody is perfect, and in fact perfection is asymptotic. But like Chogyam Trungpa said, the path is the goal.

    Best of luck, and all the best.


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