We’ve lived so long under the spell of hierarchy—from god-kings to feudal lords to party bosses—that only recently have we awakened to see not only that “regular” citizens have the capacity for self-governance, but that without their engagement our huge global crises cannot be addressed. The changes needed for human society simply to survive, let alone thrive, are so profound that the only way we will move toward them is if we ourselves, regular citizens, feel meaningful ownership of solutions through direct engagement. Our problems are too big, interrelated, and pervasive to yield to directives from on high.
—Frances Moore Lappé, excerpt from Time for Progressives to Grow Up
Thursday, September 19, 2013
The Armageddon Looting Machine: The Looming Mass Destruction from Derivatives
Although I've found this financial critic very helpful at times in explaining financial issues, I've also found her critique of the capitalist system limited entirely to the banking sector. In other words, she believes that if our central bank were owned and operated by the government, there would be no significant problems in terms of social justice.
My view is that control of banking by private parties is at the very heart of capitalism, and certainly at the very core of capitalist ruling classes. In other words, we can't remove private control from banking as long as we have the capitalist system.
With that said, I recommend this piece because she is honest and informed about financial issues. I am not well informed on the phenomenon of what she refers to as the "shadow banking system", but she has links in the article that are helpful to understand this system. It is based on the use of the new "financial instruments" or derivative gambling scams. From what she reports, it appears that nothing really has substantially changed with Wall Street or the major banks in spite of all the Congressional hearings and laws that have been passed. Both are major players in the completely unregulated "shadow banking system", and it appears that we are headed for yet another economic meltdown because of their activities while still trying to recover from the last one. Ain't life wonderful?