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Greed Is Not Good


Jesse’s Café Américain

With regards to the global financial crisis, imposing austerity is not the answer. That is like starving the slaves to improve their condition by making the plantation more profitable. Looting the ‘great house’ and the barns to feed the slaves, at least temporarily, is not the answer either. The problem is obviously in the system itself.

But either expedient solution suits the external monied interests promoting the system who seek only to plunder and drain the assets and labor of others who are all their common prey, whether they feel their kinship or not. An unjust and unsustainable system tarnishes all participants and leaves them vulnerable to exploitation and decay.

It is the root causes of the debt and the imbalances in the system that must be addressed to make any reform sustainable. And this obviously includes addressing abuses such as the promotion of a global trade regime that is inherently unjust and imbalanced to the favor of the oligarchs of whatever political wrappings around the world who hold the greater profit to themselves and leave their people relatively impoverished and exploited. And it also includes the waging of unfunded wars to protect and promote privileged commerical interests, and a political funding system that is little more than soft graft and an open invitation to corruption by special interests.

It begins with a debilitating system of taxation by the monied interests on every commercial transaction in the form of fees and commissions, and the abuse of a money system that is little more than a fraud perpetrated by private interests for the benefit of a few at the expense of the many. If you wish a simple measure of this, then look to the median wage.

Greed is not good. Greed is a disease, an abberation of simple honest ambition and necessary provision taken to excess. This simple distinction may be lost on a people no longer able to distinguish between virtue and sin, honor and expediency, appetite and gluttony, the means and the ends. Every great religion, every school of philosophy has cautioned throughout history on the perils of unbridled and unregulated greed. And yet this generation would make a god of it, although in fairness most really do not understand what it is that they do and how and whom they serve.

Greed, often in company with hubris, is a handmaiden of the corrupting influence of power and triumph of the will. Greed is contagious, and attacks the very contentment of society at its heart, turning it towards anarchy and oppression.

“Greed is a bottomless pit which exhausts the person in an endless effort to satisfy the need without ever reaching satisfaction.” -Erich Fromm

Any system that promotes greed, gluttony, and insatiability as its highest goods and fundamental ideals is a cult of perversion and addiction on a scale with ancient Rome, an imbalanced insult to the natural law, with a fatal attraction to overreach, failure and self-destruction. What the US has today is not market capitalism that rewards the merits and work of individuals, but rather is the product of dishonest and disordered minds, a system of fraud and plunder by privileged oligarchs masquerading as fair and honest markets of legitimate valuation and price discovery.

“Because the free market system is so weak politically, the forms of capitalism that are experienced in many countries are very far from the ideal. They are a corrupted version, in which powerful interests prevent competition from playing its natural, healthy role.” – Raghuram G. Rajan

The Banks must be restrained, and the financial system reformed, with balance restored to the economy, before there can be any sustained recovery.

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