The Final Days Are Nigh - Unregulated/Deregulated Capitalism’s Destabilization Of The Human Condition Will Lead To Its Failure. Probably A Permanent One.
It’s been quite a while since I have put up a post on the human condition. The link below to the article from Chris Hedges and Joe Sacco is a good excuse to do so. Even though this is many days early, I’m going to classify this as a Labor Day post. You’ll gain an appreciation of this as you read on. That is, the effects unregulated/deregulated capitalism has on labor or the citizens enslaved within its chaotic clutches. Hedges and Sacco’s story highlights real examples in the lives of Americans of what we have talked about abstractly on here; how unregulated/deregulated capitalism enslaves then destabilizes our citizens.
Hedges and Sacco’s story is a gut-wrenching tragedy of human suffering. How people have had so much of themselves taken from them. That’s right. Taken. And how much the world of humanity has lost because of it. This story really strikes a deep chord with me because of how it parallels the reality that now exists within the local communities surrounding where I grew up. While some of the macro circumstances are mildly different, (I grew up in the heart of America’s one awesome industrial/farming belt rather than in the coal belt), the greater and greater poverty, loss of determinism, loss of dignity and subsequent rampant addictions, crime, destabilization and greater reliance on the system’s pittance handouts to simply stay alive is exactly the same. I have seen people who used to be vibrant, sentient beings become hollowed shells of their former self after being unable to provide for their own livelihood and/or that of their family. I could take coal out of this story and it would define the terminal illness that now exists in countless communities across the United States.
Capitalism is dying. And while many might say what we are witnessing isn’t capitalism, if we are honest with ourselves, it indeed is. Only about thirteen percent of Americans actually produce any form of wealth or capital in our nation. (Capitalism) The rest simply push around paper in the largest financial bubble the world has ever seen, (parasites) work in some merchant/service business, sell drugs, rely on reselling purchases on eBay, sell locally-produced crafts, work for the government or receive a government handout to get the money needed to simply survive. Those eighty seven percent of people all consume capital (essentially doing each other’s laundry as Henry Ford famously remarked) and, therefore, are tax that is reliant on the thirteen percent or the government to borrow more money from banking criminals or the Federal Reserve to print more money to receive their share of national income.
If Paul Ryan thinks he can replace a system of rampant selfishness with even greater Ayn Rand/Ron Paul-style deregulated/unregulated “free market” glorification of the self/selfishness or that Obama is going to fix the system with more corporatism, Homeland Security spending, undeclared wars, failed green investments or endless hollow rhetoric, well, good luck with that. People choose to be politicians for a reason. Their intellectual capacity beyond talking, manipulating and living off of other people is limited. Politicians rise to authority on the backs of our citizens not on their virtues or selfless accomplishments. Neither party has any plan to do anything other than keep this scheme going and/or hack government/social services back to something that resembles Afghanistan. I sympathize with Afghanis, especially women and children, because the Republikan Party may be worse than the Taliban. Actually, come to think about it, it was a Dummycrat who funded elements that became the Taliban.
What we may fail to realize is that when a system, capitalism, is in its final phases, it’s never going to look like what one may believe it should look like. Or what it looked like in decades before its maturation and instability/volatility. When any system with internal contradictions is dying, we are exposed substantially to the rawness and brutality of those contradictions. Cronyism, corruption, looting, violence, exploitation and poverty have always been defining factors in capitalism as it has always been practiced. That is, private for-profit capital being the capital in capitalism. And the more deregulated this system becomes, the greater those contradictions define the system.
This isn’t rocket science. Nor does it require some grand epiphany by political idiots. Teddy Roosevelt remarked of unregulated capitalism being akin to slavery more than one hundred years ago. And, for those who believe Any Rand/Ron Paul’s delusions that free market capitalism has been corrupted by red tape, cronyism, smarmy back room deals and the like, might I simply remark that your perceptions of self and of reality are most certainly unstable. It is the deregulation of capitalism, it is the glorified self’s free market nonsense that destabilized the system. It created the environment of cronyism, endless government red tape, rigging of markets, monopoly, looting and corruption. These dynamics didn’t kill capitalism. These dynamics are deregulated capitalism. Unregulated/deregulated private, for-profit capital(ism) caused the unprecedented corruption, looting, cronyism and subversion of working markets.
Capitalism without rules exposes its countless contradictions and paradoxes. Any complex system, especially an inherently unstable one with countless contradictions, without rules will immediately become destabilized and eventually fail. When nature’s rules are subverted within any complex ecosystem, what happens? Ecosystem collapse. Ayn Rand and Ron Paul obviously didn’t study advanced mathematics or engineering. (By the way, neither did banksters. Don’the free market clowns find it ironic that banksters also preach free market religion? Haven’t you wondered if you are on the wrong side of the trade? Were maybe duped and now are too ashamed to admit it? You know, like the anthropogenic global warming clowns.) Glorification and exaltation of selfishness when it comes to society’s money, banking, corporations, resources and labor then superadded to interacting with politics without any regulation aka rule of law applied to the system somehow creating this harmonious perfect economic system is a wild unreasoned, illogical delusion that only exists within the minds people who are easily hoodwinked by whatever they read. ie, Propaganda. Capitalism without regulations or the rule of law is like democracy without a rule of law. Deregulated capitalism becomes the economic rule of man rather than the rule of law or regulation. We have become a nation of man and not of law. Deregulating aka free market capitalism not only killed capitalism it killed the rule of law of democracy.
One of (surely not the only) the fundamental crises that exists for capitalism today is there is nothing left for it to loot. Capital(ism) has looted literally all that there is to be looted. That is why over the last handful of decades our economy has become so reliant on finance (money printing) for employment. The financialization of our economy is a resultant symptom of dying capitalism. The global engine of capitalism’s over-production concentrated in the U.S., Germany, Japan and China needs to shrink by an astronomical number even with global unemployment skyrocketing. This recursive unwinding we have uniquely discussed over the last seven years will cause demand to collapse, most likely by a staggering amount, in coming years. Being capitalism is a discounting mechanism to future production, this dynamic will likely prove terminal. Obama’s economic answer in an op-ed a few years ago? More production to export more. Clearly he has no fundamental understanding of what is going on; a hallmark of politicians. Thus, they almost always make the ultimate crises even worse by trying to institute the wrong policies. Something we have discussed on here ad nauseam. These failed policies are a symptom of a society ruled by man and not by rule of law.
The human condition is incredibly fragile. Incredibly. It can be destabilized in the blink of an eye. Everything we project about ourselves is nothing more than a mirage, a belief. It is simply a reflection of the perceptions we have about our manifested self. If we outwardly project a lack of confidence, that is a reflection of how we perceive our manifested self through the sum of our experiences' perceptions.
Similarly, those who live in gated developments,(separate themselves from the human community) drive ostentatious automobiles and seemingly have an insatiable desire for more physical representations (hyper consumerism) of their material wealth are simply using external measurements for validation. They worship a false god of money (control) over truth. They worship greed, vainglory, selfishness, lust and the like. These too are projections of their own perceptions of their manifested self onto the world around them. These projections of grandiosity are a security blanket or a wall that they build around their fragile perceptions. Accumulating staggering sums of wealth and ostentatious displays of it is nothing more than a wall to hide behind. A wall that hides a very, very unstable perception of self. Those who perceive that the American dream is the accumulation of unbridled wealth, hyper-consumerism and unbridled capitalism have a fundamentally unstable perception of who they are. And, deep within that megalomania, behind those layers of security blankets of accumulated inanimate objects and massive wealth is the very weak, very fragile, very afraid, very insecure human condition. As I have noted on here before, those who seek extreme wealth (control) as a primary intent, rather than having a primary intent of creation, invention or service to society (truth) that then has the benefit of creating wealth, has a very unstable perception of self.
People who seek to separate themselves from others, be it through ostentatious displays of wealth, or any other method, do so for unstable perceptions of their manifested self. Whether that separateness is due to perceptions of weakness or perceptions of grandiosity, it really doesn’t matter. It doesn’t matter whether we seemingly exude success and confidence or we seemingly lack any success and confidence, the seemingly diametric opposites are really no different. The difference is one perception of self uses material gain to hide their vulnerability and weakness. The other can’t find a way out of their own self-victimization or victimization by others or the system. They are simply two extremes of the same human condition that everyone suffers from. Remember this, regardless of how we project our perceptions, be they positive or negative, we all define ourselves through our own suffering. It is endemic to everyone. It is a sign of disconnection from our higher self or our own divinity when those projections are extreme. That person on Wall Street who is obsessed with material gain is no different that the victims Hedges writes about in the sacrifice zones of capitalism. But, how far apart they seem. And, how far apart their perceptions of self truly are. And, how far apart is the arrogance of those who build a wall of perceived success around them and then mock the vulnerability and frailties of those who they prey upon and victimize. Those whose face they smash upon the system.
Capitalism, and this belief in free markets, forces, and yes it forces, people to compete against each other to accumulate the money and resources required to survive. A form of economic Darwinism or survival of those most willing to prey upon their fellow man. That forced competition is a-okay for those above this system, the incredibly weak and emotionally-unstable looters, who sit back and reap their plunder. But were they to have to compete in this psychotic system, a system that was created because of the hell that exists within their minds, their perceptions would quickly be destabilized as their fundamental frailties and vulnerabilities are exposed. They are just as human and just as weak as the rest of us. Most often, their manifestation of the human condition is far more unstable than the average person:
"I cannot accept your canon that we are to judge Pope and King unlike other men with a favourable presumption that they did no wrong. If there is any presumption, it is the other way, against the holders of power, increasing as the power increases. Historic responsibility has to make up for the want of legal responsibility. Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men, even when they exercise influence and not authority, still more when you superadd the tendency or certainty of corruption by full authority. There is no worse heresy than the fact that the office sanctifies the holder of it. " -- John Dalberg-Acton
This forced competition against our fellow man has an effect of substantially determining our perceptions of who we are. And, maybe more importantly, our perceptions of our self’s worthiness. Succeeding in this system feeds a thin veneer of confidence, narcissism and egoism that is based purely on a perception. Contrarily, failing to succeed within deregulated/unregulated capitalism destabilizes our perception of self. It does so because, as much as we may deny it, or seek to ameliorate it, we all seek some level of external validation for our worthiness. No one is more representative of this than politicians and elites. Failure within the system can easily turn someone’s perceptions of self into devastating unworthiness. Thus destabilizing the human condition.
As an escape from the cruelties and suffering of unregulated/deregulated capitalism, people are often destabilized to the point of drug addiction, alcoholism, eating disorders, obesity, crime and countless other projected perceptions of the manifested self’s unworthiness. Because that’s all these are. They are projections onto the world around us of our perceived worthiness or lack thereof. While there are obviously more dynamics than capitalism that lead to the destabilization of the human condition, there is no denying deregulated/unregulated capitalism’s catastrophic effects. The rampant emotional instability in our nation is a clear data point that the system is very near death. Volatility always precedes a change in trend in any complex system.
This destabilization of the human condition can easily happen to anyone who doesn’t have a support structure or community. The natural state of humanity is community, connectedness and vulnerability. Yet, the brutal selfishness and glorification of hyper-individualism of the Godless corporate state destroys community and connectedness. Vulnerability in a system of violence and human exploitation, that is unregulated capitalism, is mercilessly punished rather than exalted as core to our worthiness. This is why religion plays such a large role in the lives of the poor and those beaten down within any corrupt system. It provides community, dignity, equality, acceptance and compassion in a Godless world of unregulated, corporate control. It provides a place where vulnerability, connectedness and our humanity are embraced.
Ayn Rand’s perceptions of selfishness and free market capitalism being the pinnacle of human glory and achievement clearly shows a very unstable perception of self and a disconnection from her higher power or that which makes us human. That is, her disconnection from values of selflessness, community, empathy, acceptance, dignity, equality and kindness.
It is our frailties and vulnerability that makes us beautiful. It is our vulnerable expression of empathy, kindness, equality, community, dignity and acceptance that makes us beautiful sentient beings. It is these values that have allowed humanity to survive and thrive as a species. Not the faulty perceptions of Darwinism, individualism and selfishness. These values would have caused the human species to die out early in our existence. And, it’s no coincidence that they are the reasons our society is dying today. In our journey we are always provided with exactly the experience we need at that moment. That the culture of Adam Smith’s invisible hand of selfishness, capitalism, is dying presents humanity with exactly the experience it needs at this moment. At this moment we all need to stand to account. What do you stand for? Selfishness or empathy, community, equality and dignity.
It isn’t the size of our house or our bank account or any other materialistic glorification of unbridled capitalism that determines our values as sentient beings or the values of democracy or any free society. It is the acceptance and vulnerability to our imperfections and frailties that connects us into the cycle of life. That connects us to our fellow man and to community. The merciless, indignity and brutality of the social Darwinism of free market capitalism destroys that connectedness and destabilizes the human condition for those either unable to fend for themselves for any variety of factors, be they temporary or permanent, or those unwilling to stomp on the face of their fellow man to make it to the top as Mitt Romney has.
We are all already who we were meant to become. We are all worthy. It’s only our own faulty perceptions that keep us from realizing this. Unregulated capitalism perpetuates these faulty perceptions. In fact, it is our perceptions of separateness, be that through success or failure, that unregulated capitalism enforces, are, in fact, man’s original sin. The basis for all evil. Maybe I’ll discuss this more in a holiday post some December.
No one can beat the human condition. So, it’s not even worth trying. Attempting to glorify it through the psychotic chaos of unregulated/deregulated capitalism could only be the resultant perceptions of a very, very unstable manifested self. The only path out of the human condition is acceptance and vulnerability. The acknowledgement of our weakness relieves us of our inner conflict, our own self-judgments and our own feelings of unworthiness. It’s no irony that Buddhism and Christianity are based on these very concepts of relinquishing these perceptions of the self and admitting our frailties. Relinquishing these perceptions sets us free from the need of external validation and its associated feelings of unworthiness. Although acceptance isn’t an act so much as it is a life-long journey seeking greater inner harmony and greater connectedness to our own divinity.
Contrarily, the external validation of living within a corrupt system, that is fundamentally based on external validation, unregulated/deregulated capitalism, requires us to give away a piece of our humanity every single day. Living in a system of corruption, economic Darwinism, exploitation and violence against other human beings requires us to give away some small bit of our kindness, our dignity, our equality, our empathy, our community and our love for humankind and the natural world. In a democracy, we need a merit-based economic system that encourages acceptance, dignity, merit, equality and community as well as personal responsibility. That is not capitalism as it has always been practiced. Capitalism could be regulated into this type of system as some part, not all but part, of a merit-based economy.
We have seen this predatory and brutal sociological phenomenon countless times before throughout history; all empire, all feudal systems, all caste systems and all theocracies. One glaring example was in England and France at the height of their predatory glory in 1776. When empire routinely destabilized everyone who wasn’t part of the aristocracy, the elite and the looting class. England’s days of glory that its citizens wax poetic about were simply manifestations of a very unstable self of the ruling elites whose corporations and private, for-profit banks worked in conjunction with the polity to loot and plunder the world. But I wonder if a system has ever crumbled so fundamentally as this global system has. Most certainly, we have never come remotely close to the scale of volatility/crisis that is coming across the globe.
The people who support the system as it is constructed today are completely disconnected from their humanity. Whether they are sociopaths, megalomaniacs, narcissists, or whatever, it matters not. What matters is fixing democracy and creating democratic economics. The system could ultimately fail by simply watching its internal contradictions fall in upon itself as happened with the Soviet Union. It may happen without an ounce of fanfare in some countries. In others, that is not likely as we have discussed countless times. We really don’t know for certain. But we don know the system is headed for a reset. The game is over. The global economy based on unregulated/deregulated capital(ism) dead.