December 29, 2009

That Old Time Trickle-Down Religion

Filed under: Corporatism, Health Racket Bailout — Tags: , — Russ @ 2:06 am


We are eye-witnesses and victims of a great crime, the terminal looting of America by the corporate power structure.
Led by the finance sector the feudalists have strangled all the productivity out of America and replaced it with a slave camp whose truly vicious and brutal nature was for a long time concealed by consumer debt, especially the debt blown up by the housing bubble.
But this couldn’t be sustained, and when the bubble inevitably burst the banksters crashed the economy completely. Now they are propping up their obscene profits through a taxpayer bailout for which they paid bribes of pennies on the billions of dollars. The government, our government, has been hijacked toward the avowed goal of maintaining this corporate tyranny.
Maintaining it, and further empowering it.
Corporatism is the defining political struggle of our age.
The basic question: Are you willing to sell freedom and become a slave for the sake of marginal material improvements? (Of course, these “improvements”, to extent they were ever delivered since the 70s, were based only on cheap oil and debt. Today they are mere propaganda lies. Today anyone who’s willing to make the freedom-for-materialism trade will get neither and deserve neither.)
Or is freedom the most important thing, to live as a human being and not as a slave, even if that did mean temporary material hardship – and yet would in the end mean a return to real prosperity, and our country would be ours again.
The current debate over the so-called “health reform bill” is exemplary of this more basic question. The health insurance racketeering bill will help no one but hurt many. Its alleged benefits – restrictions on rescissions and rejections based on pre-existing conditions; premium subsidies – will not manifest in reality. Anyone who’s familiar with the way this government handles regulation and social spending knows every alleged benefit of this bill is a lie. (These are the same pols who right now want a special autocratic commission to gut SS and Medicare! What can we say about the kind of person who thinks these “subsidies” will ever exist in remotely sufficient amounts? Or that rescission bans will be rigorously enforced? To use the kindest language, we can say such a person is not capable of learning from experience.)
Meanwhile the system is very serious about the mandates. Indeed they seem so obsessed with rounding up this conscript market in order to bail out the insurance racket that they’re willing to commit political suicide over it.
So we can describe the two fundamental divides between corporatists and anti-corporatists on health racketeering.
1. The “progressives” like Paul Krugman who support the bill favor incremental process over principle, and meager outcomes over policy spirit. In the end they’re willing to live as slaves if it meant they’d be adequately taken care of on a material level. (As I said, by now this is a delusion.)
They believe this bill will do the anemic things it says it will, so they support it.
But I’m not willing to live as a slave. My first question always is, Does this further entrench corporate power? Or help dislodge it?
Even if this bill were really to do what Krugman and the rest say it will do, it’s such an assault, such an entrenchment, such a radical leap in power, in tyranny, as to be odious to everything America and the constitution are supposed to be about. (Being forced to buy a private product? As the price of merely existing? Name a precedent for that!)
(As for the issue of individuals “free riding” on the system, no one who, through his support of this bill, countenances the very existence of the parasitic insurance rackets, the worst free rider of all, has any legitimacy to speak. They’re the same who say it’s OK for big banks to walk away from underwater billion dollar CRE loans, but that some poor schlub underwater on his home mortgage is a deadbeat if he does the same thing. It’s the bullying coward fascist mentality.)
So even if I did believe this thing would deliver the feeble benefits they claim it will, I’d still reject it. The power it bestows upon much greater malevolences would far outweigh a miniscule benefit.
2. But as I said, it WON’T deliver even these puling scraps. Where have these people been? Finance regulation? Consumer protection? Drilling and mining royalties? The environment? Big Ag?
Yet Krugman and the others, in some kind of faith-based wingnut fundamentalist way, claim that through some unspecified miracle these regulations will be enforced, these subsidies won’t be gutted, this Rube Goldberg machine will work.
(Always remember, the government cadres who are allegedly going to be so conscientious here are the same who cobbled this infernal bill into existence in the first place, and are performing the same anti-reform gutting for the finance sector, the same sector which they themselves allowed to destroy the economy for profit and pleasure in the first place.
Then there’s the silly self-contradiction when they say on the one hand that if progressives in Congress can kill the bill, Congress wouldn’t visit the issue for a generation, even though it’s Obama and the right wing Democrats who need to pass some kind of bill; but on the other hand if the corporatists get exactly the predatory bill they always wanted, which is the one being deliberated right now, they’ll then suddenly have a change of heart and rush back to start fixing it!
Religious delusion doesn’t get more ineffable.)
Rescission, pre-existing conditions; assuming they’re enforced at all, the racket will simply jack up the rates so they’re unaffordable.
In the end progressives have a religious need to believe in this system. They compel themselves to believe, flouting all the evidence, that this system will ever do anything other than assault and rape and loot the people. But it is utterly beyond redemption. Corporatism corrupts completely and irrevocably.
It’s becoming clear who really opposed Bush on policy, and who only opposed him out of hack partisanship and personal hate, but who had no problem with the policies. Who actually like the Bush policies, as demonstrated in their support of Obama’s continuing those same policies.
The key to understanding Obama is that he’s a corporatist by ideology (as opposed to being one just out of personal greed motives).
Like all corporate ideologues, he believes the purpose of a society and the wealth the people create is to expropriate that wealth for the benefit of a few big corporations. The people should then be allowed to receive only what trickles down. (So Obama was being totally serious when he fawned over Reagan’s memory. Reagan was truly his ideological mentor.)
Perhaps in theory most Democrats want a little more to trickle down than Republicans do, but both agree that the wealth of the country belongs to a few feudalists by right. The people have no right to the wealth they create. They should only be allowed to get back whatever the feudalists calculate is best for themselves.
Compare this to all the actions of Bush and Obama. You’ll see that no other way of looking at things better explains all the actions.
The health racket bill is the best example yet. For anyone who actually believes the purpose of the health care system is to provide better health care services, and that basic decent health care is a human right, and that the purpose of a society is the well-being of its human people, anything other than single payer would be a non-starter.
Nor would there be any debate over the very existence of the health insurance racket, let alone how much it should be allowed to plunder.
(And the only people would be human people. There wouldn’t be any such thing as corporate “persons”. How sickening is it to even have to use a term like “human people”?)
But as we’ve seen, right from the start Obama’s leading priority has been to ensure ever greater extortions by these corporate racketeers. This was the one and only reason he and the Dems even took up health insurance “reform” in the first place. This was the only reason to make this unconstitutional, regressive, reactionary mandate the centerpiece of the policy, the only part which was inviolable, the one and only line in the sand.
This is nothing but the Gangster Mandate Bill, ornamented with some potemkin trappings. That’s all. It’s corporatism at its most purely distilled.
That’s what makes it the defining Obama policy.
Corporatism is corruption and crime, by definition.  


  1. The “progressives” like Paul Krugman who support the bill favor incremental process over principle, and meager outcomes over policy spirit. In the end they’re willing to live as slaves if it meant they’d be adequately taken care of on a material level. (As I said, by now this is a delusion.) Agree

    Comment by Sretno — December 29, 2009 @ 10:04 am

  2. Yup, that’s the spirit, i.e. the lack thereof, which is one of the many obstacles facing us.

    Comment by Russ — December 31, 2009 @ 5:47 am

  3. Well, we elected a Chicago democrat, what do you expect?

    Comment by Doc Merlin — January 3, 2010 @ 8:59 pm

  4. First, “Meanwhile the system is very serious about the mandates. Indeed they seem so obsessed with rounding up this conscript market in order to bail out the insurance racket that they’re willing to commit political suicide over it.”

    They don’t care. They’ve got a job lined up with one of those companies that pays more than being a congressman.

    I think it works like this: get elected and get the power and prestige that comes with being a U.S. congressional rep or senator. Further sell out to the corporations and do their bidding – be the bagman – etc. I say “further sell out” because to get elected in the first place – some promises had to be made in return for the financial backing. Anyhow, continue your bagman/looter ways and not care what your constituents think, because, “Hell by the next election they’ll forget – especially if I put up billboards telling them about the pork I brought home.”

    Eventually it catches up with you anyway and you get booted out by an angry electorate that replaces you with the party that was there before you doing the same porking, looting and corporate whoring you’ve been doing. Wave by, say thanks for the plum retirement plan and then head to ACME Insurance for your juicy executive job pulling down half a million a year (plus at least that much in quarterly bonuses). Retire to your easy-chair and listen to your grandchildren talk about what a great man you are for having amassed so much wealth. Sound about right?

    Comment by Bloodgroove — April 14, 2010 @ 9:12 pm

  5. Yeah, it’s often like that.

    Although few pols actually want to be voted out of office. They want to “retire” at the time of their own choosing.

    Comment by Russ — April 15, 2010 @ 2:56 am

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