Sunday, May 2, 2010

Financial Meltdown: Whose Fault; Wall Street or Capitalism?

Much has been made of the financial meltdown and the fact? that Wall Street was the cause of it. Currently, there's an inquest going on about the conduct of the employees of a particular Wall Street firm. This firm is accused of selling loans while knowing that the loans are damaged. I've watched the circus with some interest, not to learn anything I didn't know already, but for the entertainment value of the question and answer sessions. I'm something of a student of human psychology and I've been really enjoying the cat and mouse game that's been going on.

However, I must assert here that what we perceive as arrogance from these CEOs and employees of the Wall Street firms is simply human nature. Give a man enough money and power-the kind they have on Wall Street- and he will begin to feel like a little god. Everybody else becomes puny little non entities. Most of us will be the same way if thrust into the same position. And many of these guys are thrust into those positions.

As badly as we might want to believe that it is, the problem isn't Wall Street, the problem is the economic system. The problem is Capitalism as presently constituted. A system that's rigged to favor only the few at the top like our capitalism is, can only work for so long. This one has simply run its course and needs fundamental changes. As long as we keep propping it up as we'll do with these impending reforms, we can only go a few years and wind up right back where we are right now.

The reason for this is simple. It is because the wealth making machine of the few at the top has become so fine tuned that it's very efficiently sucking up all the wealth being produced thereby leaving very little for the majority to scramble for. That's why there isn't enough money left to go round. Recession is just a name used to sugarcoat a very bad situation. Now after taking billions of dollars of your money in the name of bailouts, the fat cats are back to paying themselves the fat salaries and bonuses they're used to. And because they can do this, they tell you that the recession is over.

This system is so bad that the only way that its health is measured is by how much wealth is going into the pockets of the few wealthy. You and I, the majority, don't count. I know this because while they're already celebrating the end of the recession-because they can pay their fat salaries and bonuses with your bailout money- the library where I work is going to fire nearly a hundred workers and close four branches. That is the reality of the majority in this country. A reality that, scarily, will continue to get worse for as long as this system remains unchanged.

I'm not advocating socialism like the GOP like to claim, but I think there can be a better mix that will ensure that the king doesn't get nine pieces of the pie leaving just one piece for the nine others at the table. That, to me, is not Democracy. Democracy is where everybody gets a piece of the pie. To those who say that this system is the best and that everybody has a chance at the "American Dream" I say, America is over two hundred years old and yet only less than one percent of a population of over three hundred million have achieved that dream. Think about it. This is what I think, what do you think? 

No comments:

Post a Comment