Watching the slow-motion train wreck of an economic system collapse unfold

Watching the slow-motion train wreck of an economic system collapse unfold
click pic to reminisce

print, and lie  

Posted by howard in nyc

2012_09_15
12:45

that is the succinct version of the current model for economic recovery and growth.  print money.  lie about, well everything.  why they are printing money, where the money is headed, how the newly printed money is going to drastically increase the price of gasoline and food (just like the last two times they printed money on this scale), how that increase in prices isn't really 'inflation', and most of all, what the effect on job growth will actually be (zero).

i haven't had much to say lately.  the steady pace of disgusting events is so disheartening, and the direction of march to a horrific reckoning so unwavering, as well as obvious, i feel there is little to say. 

the prior rounds of money printing by the federal reserve could, i suppose, be credibly expected by some folks to yield some positive effects on the economy.  (beyond simply delaying and worsening the inevitable consequences of the failed system resting of trillions of dollars of debt that cannot/will not ever be repaid.)  but the results of those prior actions are in.  they failed.  they failed to achieve the announced goals, although they succeeded in the actual goals of enriching the failed banks and maintaining the status quo for a couple more years.

if QE1 or QE2 had succeeded, there would be no need for QE3.  if the economy was not completely screwed today, there would be no reason to print $40 billion per month (or more), until the economy is fixed.

it is really that simple.  the action of the fed this week is a simple admission of failure.  and an admission of ben and barry and the gang that they have no fucking idea what to do next.  so they will just do what failed previously.

at least, the banks and wall street will get first crack at that $40 billion a month.  and they will maintain their salaries and bonuses.  and they will have a small tax skimmed off the top--to 'contribute' to mitt and barry's election campaigns.

the lies are essential, to mask the simple truth from us.  to convince us that inflation is actually ~2%, despite the truth of gas and food prices.  to convince us that the unemployment rate is actually ~8%,  despite the truth of more people and a higher percentage of people on food stamps than ever before.  or the truth of a lower percentage of working age people actually employed since the great depression.

or the biggest lie.  that a presidential election contested between mitt and barry makes a bit of difference in the direction of the country, the economy, the death of the rule of law for corporations and wealthy individuals, the erosion of justice and personal privacy for the rest of us and the growth and spread of foreign wars, foreign murder and other military actions.

the electoral process is corrupted.  completely corrupted by money.  not only does voting for president not matter (even in the state of florida, which has the privilege of actually electing the president), but voting for senators or representatives has been rendered equally meaningless.  unless you are a literal millionaire, and contribute enough money to be heard.

to think redemption of this corrupt electoral process can be found through voting is wrong.  as illogical as the idea that the economic flaw of too much debt can be fixed by more debt.  more voting, for the 'right people' is not going to work.  sorry, but that is the current reality.

even the fantasy that a couple of slightly less bad supreme court appointees can begin to rectify the horrendous state of our republic cannot be reasonably indulged.  first, supreme court justices can not be counted upon to do what is expected--solid conservative chief justice john roberts, appointed by dubya, twists his legal logic into a pretzel and votes for the health care reform bill.  earl warren is the next best example.  remember that when an obama appointee from the next four years votes in favor of continued corporate personhood or continued government surveillance, torture or war down the road.

second, even 1) if obama is reelected; 2) if he gets one or two sotus picks in his second term; 3) if a major ruling like Citizens United is revisited; 4) if it is overturned; 5) if the result works its way through lower courts and the complex corporate/justice web of deceit money and lackey lower court judges, and the pernicious effects of corporate personhood actually begin to be reversed in real life.

that process will take many years.  maybe a couple of decades.  and, bubba, we ain't got that much time left.

the economy will not survive many more years, much less decades.  the economy was completely screwed in 2007-08.  they have fixed nothing.  they admitted this week that the economy is so broken, they have to take this extraordinary measure, again, for the third time, to fix it.  even though the repair failed twice before.

so that is another 'if' to add to the five 'ifs' above.  that particular fantasy, of slightly less bad supreme court members is the only reason to vote that is not a blatant lie.  any serious, honest assessment of democratic and republican actions of the past thirty years clearly shows bilateral, bipartisan actions to unleash banks and corporations from the shackles of taxes and regulation to the ruin of the middle and working classes; to expand war and militarism abroad for the sake of oil (and just for the power of it); to outsource jobs and manufacturing to mexico, then to southeast asia, then to china, in the name of 'free trade'; to continuing building the central security state of spying, surveillance, militarized local police and criminalization of protest and dissent.  obama's actual behavior of the past three and 2/3rd years has been in lockstep with each and every one of these evils.  as the old rabbi said at the climax of the excellent coen brothers film A Serious Man, "When the truth is found…to be lies".  (yeah, all the love within me has died…well almost all.)

but, so many people seem to prefer the comfort of some of those lies, finding the truth to be but cold comfort.