Re: ZeitGeist Moving Forward
Wow!, don’t like making choices do you? You want someone else to make them for you. Has it occured to you that each of us has a more powerful computer in our heads than has ever been made? A computer modeling system is only as good as whoever programs it, who would you trust to do this job?
I do agree that there is “no real freedom”, but what do you mean by that
Well seeing as you asked–Get ready for it!
GRoberts–If you own a small business and are producing something of real value…good for you. As you started young, you have a head start over anyone in their twenties and thirties who can’t imagine ever becoming a sole proprietor. You belong to a vanishingly small group of people; those who haven’t been displaced by Mal Wart, Chuck E.Cheese, etc… and born during a time of real expansion sans financialization of the economy.
Large corporations end up catering to many of our frivolous wants, like big screen televisions, and all of the other multiple choice consumer products I’ve already described. They go above and beyond that by flooding the market with truly gratuitious choice. What they actively take away from us are basic needs; to be part of a community where we are known, appreciated and rewarded for our efforts; to have meaninful work and to have a bit of time and energy left over to cultivate independent interests, hobbies and informal education.
Capitalism in the developed nations, particularly the U.S is way past it’s best before date. The high strangeness of our current way of life isn’t just a bit of undigested potato that has crept into the dream of Capitalism. It’s a feature that was well understood by Communist theorists. Love ’em or hate ’em, they got the part right about money eventually concentrating at the very top, Ponzi pyramid style. Mega-corporations operating in a laissez faire environment, catalyzed this process. It’s crony capitalism gone wild, as predicted. Evidence of decline, too, are all the products made in China that break after a few uses, (oddly reminescent of shoddy Soviet products and remember how we howled with laughter at stories of Russian made blue jeans that were all wrong?) A breakdown in quality control where substitution becomes more and more difficult, is a hallmark of the end stage. Our system is mirroring Communist style retail phenomena, right down to the shoddy merchandise.
Small businessmen are the very first to look at govt bailouts for the banks, govt insured healthcare(American style), a thicket of red tape and IRS interference as somehow being hostile to “capitalism”. In fact, they are perfect examples of class warfare, describe too, by Marx, a consequence of end stage capitalism where protection of large oligarchic corporations from meaningful competition coming up from below, is insured. As far as the bank bailouts go, Socialism would have had the banks nationalized, bond and share holders would have been allowed to flounder. The boards of directors would have been fired and replaced.
I don’t disagree with you GRoberts that capitalism in it’s early stages, where people compete on a more even playing field, is the best, most efficient economic model and the ponzi pyramid aspect, was also appropriate as the population grew, both globally and nationally. But we have reached the limits. So what do we do now? We deleverage and contract, and we try to do it in a humane fashion.
If we don’t address the problems in a realistic way the rotten banana phase of Capitalism will progress along the same line, until there is truly nothing left. Economy will go “poof”! Promoting the idea of a planned economy, using advanced computer modelling systems, though anathema to most people, doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has to be better than what we’ve got. People need a break, the planet needs a break and both the global and national population (U.S.) has to shrink by attrition. Things are at a crisis point and they could become dire.
What do I mean by “no freedom”. Well, for one, people are being enslaved by bankers and hobbled by corporate propaganda that frames the issues in our lives, along self serving lines, for starters. I could go on and on, but have already done that, so will restrain myself!