The Collapse Of Capital(ism): Apple’s Stock Worth More Than The Entire Russian Stock Market
The last time I wrote on here that Apple’s stock price was closing in on the value of all stocks in Russia was March of 2012. Here we go again. This time Apple has actually surpassed the value of all Russian stocks. Apple employs 70,000 people and makes what are essentially commodity telephones and low-end computer products created with commodity processors and commodity components. Their value-add is literally just an operating system and their support. Well, and they have literally cornered the market for much of the world’s intellectual capital in the entertainment space. A dynamic that has only been possible through state violence. Beyond that, their products achieve an insane markup because of branding propaganda that allows the company to charge a massive uplift for buying something with its name on it. The quality and component failure rates for its hardware are the exact same as other companies using the same componentry.
Apple’s recent phone fully configured lists for well over $1,000. I saw about $1,400 but I am too lazy to confirm that on Apple’s site so do your own diligence. I have a phone from Motorola that is probably 80-90% of what the Apple phone is and I paid $50 for it with a n0-frills, no-contract carrier. (ie no phone subsidy although they did actually give me a $50 rebate). Let’s just be honest. People who pay $1,000+ for a phone or sign phone carrier contracts to subsidize the purchase of a $1,000+ phone are the epitome of the manipulated ignorance the existing economic, financial, monetary and political fraud need to sustain themselves. Mindfulness, awareness and enlightenment of any kind cannot coexist with $1,000 phones while untold numbers of people in our nation and the world suffer massive economic, financial, monetary and political injustice. You might contemplate what that means for the eventual fate of Apple. That, and its ability to essentially control all of the intellectual capital associated with digital rights in the entertainment industry. And why the central planners who created and control this system to exploit, victimize and prey upon humanity with impunity now feel the need to deceive us with mass “undercover” operations meant to root out those who dissent and those who seek justice, truth and liberty. Corporate capitalism is an invention of the state and only exists through state violence. Both Apple and the state rely on manipulated ignorance for their survival. And their fate is completely intertwined.
Now, let me be fair. Apple’s products are nice products. But, the mystique is nonsense. The one thing that I will admit is worth some price markup is to talk to a post-sale support person who speaks fluent English and is technically-competent rather than a sweatshop call-center minion half way across the world who, not only can I not understand, but often has the technical skills of a brick. Apple does differentiate itself with this ability. That is quantifiably worth something. $10 or $20 per unit? But, then again, Apple’s products and the company itself really have little to do with why it’s valuation is a massive, massive bubble. That is a reflection of financial, economic, monetary and political fraud.
Russia is a nation of 150,000,000 people and all of the economic value they create, as captured by their stock market, is worth less than Apple’s stock. How is it that Apple is worth more than all of the monetized wealth of Russia? In reality, would not the oil and energy stocks in Russia be comparatively priceless? Is it not more important to have a supply of cheap, abundant energy rather than a phone that will be obsolete in a few years? Is Apple’s stock price so high because it sells a lot of iPhones? Hahahaha. That is ridiculous. One more time. Hahahaha. Oops. Sorry, I just threw up a little in my mouth. But the reason for its massive valuation is indeed very simple. It’s the same reason why the bottom 150,00,000 people in this nation don’t have more than a few thousand dollars in net wealth. Because our entire economic, financial, monetary and political systems are based on fraud and corruption. There is an endless stream of free money for the predatory, capitalists we call the “investor class”, aka renter capitalist moochers and parasites, to drive Apple’s stock price and the entire financially-traded asset market to the moon, while productive, or capably productive, decent citizens are f*cked over by capitalists and the state with nonliving wage economic opportunity, massive corporate healthcare extortion and the indignity of state handouts that exist because corporate capitalism socializes its losses onto democracy. Let’s see. Endless money to create asset bubbles owned by the predatory aristocracy and toady politicians? Or, endless free money to support human development, community development, economic determinism and democracy? When again did we ever have these under class-based corporate capitalism? When were those good ole days? Oh yeah. They existed during these times. You know, when we were hiring Nazi war criminals and when blacks, women, minorities and the white working class wage slaves knew their place. And the corporate state made sure through its policies of intimidation and state terrorism that there was no question who was in control.
There is no corporate profit in investing in people or human development. Instead, in our corporate-state-controlled disposable society, anyone who cannot help corporations exploit humanity for-profit or who doesn’t have a pot to piss in and thus cannot consume corporate capitalism’s useless overproduction, or no longer can wage war to pave the way for corporate exploitation and on and on and on. But there certainly is profit in shoving Apple and all financially-traded assets to the moon. Assets monopolized by state-enforced class and privilege. There is no way out for those who have stolen everything. Karma is a bitch.
In closing, let me throw in another bubblicious lunacy that is on the stock market new high list. Just to give a better indication of what kinds of stocks are leading this market. Below is a current 20+ year chart of Old Dominion Freight. This is an LTL trucking company. All they do is drive around freight. That’s it. It’s a low-margin, cyclical commodity business. (Although the trucking business is rife with its own fraud perpetuated by corporations that have destroyed the independent trucker.) That’s another conversation. And because this is a commodity, cyclical low-margin business, the company’s stock didn’t go anywhere for decades as one would expect. Financially, Old Dominion has $8 million in cash and $180 million in debt. They have negative free cash flow and that means, if something doesn’t change, they aren’t going to be able to pay their massive debt-servicing bill. In other words, just another mismanaged corporation teetering on the precipice that is propped up by the false illusions created by financial and monetary manipulation and fraud. Just like thousands of other unsustainable corporate business models.
Don’t kid yourself into believing this bubble is in specific stocks. Money is fungible. The bubble is in everything that money, financial firms, corporate capitalism and the state has touched. You may not see it but that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist courtesy of a wildly rotten, wildly fraudulent, wildly corrupt economic, monetary and financial system propped up by a wildly rotten, wildly fraudulent, wildly corrupt political and capitalist class.
If you really appreciate why Apple, Old Dominion and all financial assets are in the midst of the biggest global financial bubble the world has ever seen, then you appreciate why I have said that this may be the end of days for corporate capitalism. I’ll lay that out in detail soon enough. But, it stems from something written of repeatedly here leading up to the 2008 collapse. That is, there is no demand for capital in this nation with the lowest levels ever recorded in the past one hundred years of recorded data. Why is that? Because capital(ism) has already collapsed. By the way, those who believe the U.S. or the world has entered some mythical post capitalist era are delusional as noted on here time and again. And, I will prove it.
A lot of people say this isn’t capitalism. They are right. Sort of. It’s not the industrial capitalism that they are familiar with. But it is capitalism. Renter capitalism was the original form of capitalism. Industrial capitalism came later. This is the type of capitalism that we saw in 1776 and America’s longest depression 140-odd years ago. Long time readers will recognize the Courier & Ives print below from America’s longest depression. That is where we are today. The question is if this system can flip itself back to industrial capitalism. Doing so would first require this system to collapse. And I do mean collapse. I am quite dubious of industrial capitalism returning to this nation but it certainly is a possibility. The required changes would tank existing paradigms including existing industries, salaries and possibly entire segments of the economy and the existing political system. More on that another time. But if you still believe we are simply headed for just another correction, aka buying opportunity, you might want to pull your head out of that dark, warm place. Because manipulated ignorance is no longer working for most. That is, except for the political, financial and investor class, and their kids, who all own iPhones and Apple stock.