Tuesday, June 05, 2012

The Social Science Of Economics - Predation, Victimization and Violence Endorsed By The State - Part Two. Is Mitt Romney An Economic Bully Enabled By A Corrupt Political System?

I’m going to start the series of posts I introduced last week with the recent news about Mitt Romney’s behavior while in school.  Let me state that this is not a politically-motivated or partisan post.  Long time readers will clearly appreciate that remark.  I find no truth in political parties or politics; both of which are institutions of control that subvert truth, reason, public service and democracy through endless lies, manipulations, distortions and false narratives.   It is leaders, not politicians, who exhibit virtue and selflessness.

The intent of these series of posts is to show how social factors tie to or even drive economic factors in our society.  And, how state-derived values are reflected in these factors in both our society and our economy.  Ultimately it is these dynamics that determine the success of our society and our economy.  Measuring nonfarm payroll, credit expansion, the purchasing manager’s index and other quantitative data points is void of the concept of quality.  Economics has missed the thirty plus years of disintegration of our economy because they are sorely ill-equipped and ill-trained to understand the qualitative aspects of the roots of economics; sociology, social anthropology, psychology and the associated human condition.  Therefore, there are many ills including various forms of violence and self-destructive behavior in our economy that go undiagnosed.  Or, frankly, endorsed by the state.  It is only a qualitative look at these factors that gives us proper insight into a legitimate economic analysis.  

Let me start this post by stating that Romney’s self-professed religion means nothing to any analysis.  I have cited how time and again religion is used as a tool of control by politicians.  Religion is the most manipulated and consistent form of control and tool of violence throughout  all of social history.  Virtue is defined by action and not rhetoric.   Especially political rhetoric.  The intermingling of religion and politics creates a double-edged sword of control.  And those who use both as a control point wield incredible power over decent people.  It’s quite typical for that power to appear magnanimous as its jack boot is firmly planted on society’s neck. 

The recent revelations of some of Romney’s behavior back in high school and college could easily be construed as the typical digging-up-dirt and mudslinging of power politics as practiced in our control-based political system.  But there are enough corroborated sources coming forward to consider this as having some merit to it.  The Republicans would have us believe that what happened thirty years ago doesn’t matter today.  Possibly true.  But possibly not.  As sentient beings, we are not defined by our past.  That is, if we learn from it.  But, if the behavior hasn’t changed, then prior dynamics most certainly have merit.  In the case of Romney, I think there is some reason to believe it hasn’t.  

People who show an inability to learn from patterns of destructive behavior, that are always derived from  issues with fear-based control, have a distorted perception of self.  In worst case scenarios that distorted perception can be a result of personality disorders and even traits of psychotic behavior, extreme narcissism and psychopathy.

Five years ago at the peak of the private equity bubble I wrote a big piece about the predation of private equity and the myths of their brilliance.   The idea for that post came from the endless episodes of CNBC’s sycophantic Maria Bartiromo fawning all over her private equity guests as masters of the universe.   They are in fact anything but.

In many ways one could describe private equity as a form of economic predation, victimization and violence endorsed by the state.  Private equity is a control-based institution that has many parallels to childhood peer victimization aka bullying.  In fact, I would label it as adult peer victimization enabled through state economic policy.  Private equity predation and  bullying is possibly consistent with behavior that is now being reported regarding Romney’s teen and college years   

Peer victimization aka bullying, which is clearly a serious form of violence, starts at a relatively young age and is obviously a big problem in school-aged kids in this country.  A BIG problem that oftentimes has lasting and severe psychological consequences on its victims.   It’s too much for this post but I suspect the systemic and severe issues with bullying and victimization in our youth is partly a measurable outcome of our society’s incredibly violent values.  Violent values that are also endorsed by authority within our economy.  Bullying and peer victimization may exist everywhere but in the U.S., it is an incredibly serious problem to a degree where it is systemic and very severe. 

Private equity does not create jobs or value or wealth in our economy.  It simply shifts wealth through looting and victimization.  It is a destructive form of economic predation and violence endorsed by the state.   Private equity most generally are not turnaround experts or business leaders as they are mythically portrayed through the use of propaganda.   Their core competency is that they are most generally very effective looters; a form of substantial economic violence.  Additionally, private equity is cronyism defined.   Private equity uses public resources – our nation’s taxpayer-backed bank financing and corporations – to loot taxpayers and democracy.    It is a very, very clubby business of good ole boys.  Not anyone can walk into good ole boy Jamie Dimon’s office and get a multi-billion dollar loan to loot another company.    Mitt Romney could. 

Austerity tells us there is no money in our banking system to feed, clothe, educate and shelter our citizens.  But there is plenty of money available for private equity cronies to loot.   This is nothing short of high crimes and misdemeanors against democracy in my estimation. 

I have noted on here for a few years that Mitt Romney seems a very disturbing personality.   Anyone who has spent his entire life seeking power, money and control at almost any cost, really concerns me.   In most instances some may say that’s none of my business.  But it is other people’s business when that person wants to be our president or wants to be granted authority to run our corporations.  That Romney made his money by starting and running a private equity firm, a very violent predatory business, disturbs me greatly.  Is this simply a manifestation of school years behavior of the bully that is now being portrayed by some former peers? 

Now Romney needs to be president.  Needs.  Clearly needs.  He is driven by the desire for greater control.   You can see it in his awkwardness when talking to every day people.  He’s not authentic.  He’s disconnected from the audiences he speaks to.   He’s unable to connect with people on a fundamentally genuine level.  He’s plastic man.  He cannot relate to people that his firm actually preyed upon in his business career.  That is why even ideological political voters, who consistently outsource their thinking to a supreme being, have not endorsed him in the numbers one would typically see.  But, it is clear the Wall Street elites, violent predators themselves, clearly endorse him as their man.   Romney’s economic success is in fact a manifestation of Wall Street.  It seems quite plausible, if not evident, that Romney is disconnected from his humanity and his higher power and is consumed by the manifested self and its endless need for control. 

As we step back and look at the broader context, there are multiple images of the self that everyone projects.  One is the image that those in public see.  Another is one our friends and family see.  Another may be only what our intimate partners see.  And, finally, there is the image that only we ourselves see.  If someone is connected to their higher power and their higher levels of consciousness, ie the values that make us human, authenticity amongst those images generally align.  If not, they can be completely different.   Think Ted Bundy.  A dashing, attractive and charming predator.   Now, I am surely not comparing Mitt Romney to Ted Bundy.  At least not directly, although personally I believe there is ample evidence that private equity is a predatory, violent, victimizing criminal racket regardless of what the “law” states. 

We see the veneer of Romney.  The veneer he wants us to see.  That image struggles with authenticity.  What’s underneath?  What is the perception of self that only he knows exists?  Something drives that insatiable desire for control, power, money and authority.  His need to be president and is willing to use untold millions of the money he has accumulated through his efforts in private equity to achieve that objective. That stories are coming out now about Romney having a clear pattern of bullying behavior in his youth does not surprise me in the least.   His entire career of looting companies using public resources for private gain is essentially economic bullying and victimization. 

This story is very consistent with many of our long time remarks on here that the most emotionally-unstable in our society rise to levels of authority, often self-granted authority, in a culture of predation, victimization and violence.  Where those most willing to throw their fellow citizen under the bus are  the most economically-rewarded.  And, that the violence we see in our society today is a reflection of these values embraced by the state.  In other words, the state rewards this type of behavior with greater and greater economic and social authority.  

Corporate predation is a reflection of the violent values of our government.  Is Mitt Romney a poster boy for those values?   While we don’t have many certainties other than a lifetime of public behavior, what we do know is that his values are defined by whatever flip-flopping rhetoric will help him achieve greater control and power over other people and the world around him.   And, the type of society and economy that Mitt Romney envisions, by once again deregulating Wall Street, embracing the predatory corporate state and dismantling our democratic social programs aka austerity will lead to a future of continued economic and social destruction.   Obviously the human condition is very complex but I think these are fair issues to consider for a person seeking the most powerful position of economic and social control in our nation.  Issues supported by ample evidence.   Enough evidence that anyone who understands the potential evils of a distorted perception of self would find it very difficult to take the risk of voting for Mitt Romney. 

Regardless, we as a nation cannot continue to elect corporate-controlled politicians from either party into public service and expect our economic or social policies or dynamics are ever going to change.  We have been on a downward slope of ever-increasing economic and social  destruction for more than three decades courtesy of the corporate state. 

Those who seek power and control are never to be trusted.  Never.  There is no benevolence in the tyranny of the self.  Only a reasoned, transparent, democratic rule of law should ever have authority or control over another human being.  Law enforced by public servants who actually have an intent and ability to act selflessly, not political toadies beholden to their corporate masters.  Granting people authority over other human beings is itself a form of violence, for those who seek that authority must, by the very fact that they seek such power and control, have an unstable perception of self.    An unstable perception of self that they seek to ameliorate through gaining greater and greater control and power (violence, predation and victimization) over people and the world around them. 

We are a nation of laws, not men. 

Story here and here and here and here

posted by TimingLogic at 11:23 AM