Neoliberalism’s Legacy

Ravens on steps at Barr'd Island

This Chris Hedges post inspired my listing below, but my own blunt, scruffy and ornery mood soon took over, so don’t blame him…

Neoliberalism’s Grand Achievement: 8 Families now own half of the Planet’s “wealth”

A concise, incomplete history of it’s ascendency:

  • Sharing the wealth was invented to deal with uppity, but needed, unionized workers in the 20th century
  • A phoney science called “economics” was born and nurtured
  • They stumbled onto a flawed idea called “free” trade
  • Corporations were soon made into “persons” with rights and the ability to live forever; that’s much longer than real persons live
  • Those rights grew and grew as worker’s power shrank
  • Human rights, such as clean water, became “commodities” – sold at a positively pornographic price in some places
  • Market “freedom” inevitably led to privatization: fewer and richer Rich vs more and poorer Poor
  • Entertainment and gadgetry kept the middle class distracted – a worthy crowd control project presented to government/corporate/labour think tanks in the 70’s
  • Monopolies were made legal instead of criminal
  • Unemployment Insurance was euphemized Employment Insurance in Canada
  • Companies were allowed to use their employees’ pension savings, including the workers’ own contributions leaving just a bunch of promised numbers in the safe
  • Banks were allowed play with insurance and sell mutual funds
  • Crazy shit like derivatives became a way for the banks to get richer – until they didn’t
  • Your taxes and mine went to bail out poorly managed banks and their overpaid executives
  • Car companies were bailed out even though they broke their pension promises
  • Private equity firm(s) gobbled up peoples’ houses at auctions as if they’d planned it.
  • “Disaster Capitalism” took control of natural and organized disasters
  • Little wealth was created, just redistributed upward
  • The good freedoms of the many (association, speech…) were replaced by freedoms of the few (monopoly, price gauging, foreclosure…)
  • Human beings are now just another “commodity” to those above eight families.

Privatization of Public Services ~30 Years Worth Of Skullduggery

“… the privatization of social services has transferred public monopoly power and authority to private monopolists…”

Someone asked Jeff Nguyen in his brilliant post A nation at-risk: American hustle – largely on the oppressive private prison industry – how long the privatization of public service has been going on. The answer: decades. In reflecting on the question I remembered long ago seeing a conference being advertised that was designed to teach the Warfare Companies how to get their greedy mitts on public service moneys – health care, welfare, etc. Failing to find any notes on this in my diaries, I did a little research: Continue reading “Privatization of Public Services ~30 Years Worth Of Skullduggery”

Which Name Do You Like Best?

Mourner Canadian Monument at Vimy, France
Mourner
Canadian Monument at Vimy, France

Thinking of focusing my future posts on anything but the shit that’s coming down for H. sapiens.

Convinced now that we, and all of the higher mammals, are on the way out.
A suicidal reality series.
We are both the perpetrators and the final victims of a reality series that isn’t on TV. What’s in the media is just keeping us distracted. Reading Oxfam’s report that 85 individuals have amassed half of the planet’s wealth didn’t help to convince me.
“the 0.00001 per cent”
It’s just one more sign proving what I already know. We’re all-but-locked in a suicidal endgame.
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I hated the game, Monopoly, as a young person. Once someone got the best properties the sanest response was to resign but, unlike in chess or in geopolitics, that option wasn’t available.
My huge focus on “What’s Wrong With The World” won’t change the outcome. We bipeds are goners.
And my solo struggle gets me into arguments with those I love who don’t see what I see “through my glass, darkly…”
I feel alone in my circle, most of whose inhabitants either don’t get it or, being quicker than I, have given up and focused on what lowers their blood pressure.
Everybody bitches, but so many of us bite at some thing that immediately affects us personally.
We attack the (many) symptoms and ignore the disease.
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I will try very hard to make my future posts about…
nice stuff…
Photos…
Lyrics and Chords…
Travel…
Tonglen Meditation…
Hockey scores – well, maybe not…