Thursday, October 18, 2012

3 Crimes

     There has been a growing movement among Americans opposing the growing disparity between income classes.  The middle class appears to be joining the lower, while the upper class grows more wealthy.  The occupy movement has been the most visible, but virtually everyone has some resentment about this gap.  The real tragedy is the complete failure of the populous to identify the actual problem.  That's understandable; the real problem is large, old, complex, and scary.  I'll break it down into 3 crimes which are making the super rich, richer.
     Crime #1 Fractional reserve banking.  If this term is new to you I would recommend this video.  This is the practice now exercised by every single bank in the country (probably on the planet) in which they only keep on hand a small fraction of the money which has been deposited to them for warehousing, and take the large majority of it to invest wherever they think they will make the most money. Sometimes they buy treasury bonds at a guaranteed 3% interest, sometimes they invest it in a mortgage.  In any case, your money which you deposited is not all readily available  to you, it's been taken by the bankers, invested and profited from, big profit!  Now if you come a' calling for that money, and the bank doesn't have it, no problem.  The bank just calls the Federal Reserve, part of whose mission statement is to be the 'Lender of Last resort.'  The Fed then gives a 0% interest loan to the bank and it does this by printing those dollars, thus increasing the total supply of dollars, and decreasing the value of each individual dollar. 
      Crime #2 Corporations and the State.  Large corporations are basically amoral entities that just follow profit and loss.  They usually have no convictions, but they want to grow, and they want more money.  In a truly free market they would be a fantastic institution, since the only way they could make profit is by better satisfying the needs of the consumer, and increasing the number of their consumers.  to put it simply, the only path to success in free market capitalism is to serve the masses with a product or service that betters their lives.  This is not the case in a system where the State has great deal of centralized power, as is the case today.  In this case large corporations habitually petition and lobby the government representatives with millions of dollars seeking a monopoly.  The steel workers of PA spent tremendous effort to elect Abraham Lincoln because Lincoln promised to double the tariff, freeing the steel workers from competition, and enslaving the steel consumer to the domestic producers.  In recent years the industries lobbies have become much more frightening.  The many corporations which make up the military industrial complex profit from war, and thus are constantly engaged in electing those to congress who are the greatest warmongers.  The medical insurance corporations drafted the Obamacare bill which will at the point of a gun force states to sell their insurance, and force every person to buy it.  The medical drug companies use the state run American medical association, and the FDA to eliminate any threats to their most profitable lines regardless of life giving advances.  Dr. Burzynski developed a procedure which successfully treated inoperable brain cancer, and for his incredible contribution to science he was repaid with a decade long court battle with the FDA, who still does now allow him to practice medicine on the general public.  Chemo therapy is way too profitable a business for an innovator like Burzynski to take away.  The examples go on and on.
     Crime #3 Quantitative Easing:  Since the financial crisis of 2008 there have been 3 rounds of QE or Quantitative Easing from the Federal Reserve.  What they do is print a huge amount of money, and do one of two things with it; force loan it to banks at 0% interest, who then lend the money bake to the U.S. treasury to get bonds at 3% interest.  Or they buy up toxic assets, i.e. mortgages in foreclosure, junk bonds, bad derivatives.  The idea is to prop up the stock market by infusing money into it and clearing bad assets out of it.  The losers here are the American people.  The money printing devalues our paychecks, and these toxic assets are now just public liabilities, and this is all done for the benefit of the super rich hedge fund managers, and investment bankers.
     Calls for tax code tweeks, government regulations, and more watch dog agencies will only add to the problem.  As I've shown the problem is the very existence of a centralized government with coercive agencies who can be bought for a price.

Recommended reading:

'Organized Crime' by Tom DeLilorenzo

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Aren't We the State?

     What is the State? it's a question which most people have not considered in depth.  I was forced to come to grips with what exactly the state is when I first read a short essay by Murry Rothbard called 'The anatomy of the State'  I am unable to present the level of explanation Rothbard offered in the magnificent essay so I'll simply link to it.  To put it simply, the state is a group of thugs who make demands of you at the point of a gun.  The masses have been tricked into believing they are self governed though the miracle of democracy. 
     The one word that founders such as Thomas Jefferson, Thomas Paine, John Adams, and others feared more than monarchy, was democracy.  They rightly understood the insanity that results from mob rule.  While and individual is often able to think critically, and make good decisions, the masses have a track record of self destruction.  Consider a riot: virtually no individual within a rioting mob would engage in that sort violence were he not a part of the group.  Reason and thought are overruled by guttural war cries within a mob.  Even those who know the course of action is despicable very often go along with it.  This is what makes Ron Paul so astounding, during his time as a representative in congress he made more sole dissenting votes than all other representatives combined.  He resisted the mob in the name of principle, a unique act indeed.
     We are not the government, the government uses the consent of the masses to maintain their monopoly on violence, all organized crime must operate on this principle.  Making examples of individuals who stand up against the thugs to instill obedient fear in the heart of the masses.  Consider what democracy accomplishes, within a pure democracy 51% could vote for the extermination of the 49%, if we are the government then would that mean the 49% committed suicide?  Neither are the 51% the government, consider the current congress.  The present approval rating is 13.8%.  Any yet each one of these members of congress won their democratic election with a majority, and yet now their actions are rejected by 79.6% of the country.  We are being used by an Aristocratic ruling class to consent to our own slavery.  Democracy is a rebellion mitigation technique and nothing more.  It changes nothing, Monarchies require the consent of the masses to maintain control just like democracies do, but revolution is more likely in a monarchy since there is no other outlet for the energy of the people who desire to bring down their rulers.  Elections serve nicely as this pressure valve without requiring the ruling class to make any concessions.  The evidence of this is clear in the office of president.  The federal government have been engaged in extensive wars and foreign intervention since 1913 and it hasn't stopped or slowed down since.  Every once in a while a candidate will run on peace, but once elected (peace candidates usually win) they seem to become more militant than the president before, both Bill Clinton, and Barack Obama are examples of this.  Nothing changes, the top contributers of both candidates are usually the same people.
     Lew Rockwell; a political, economic, and historical scholar and author once said the state is much worst than a crime syndicate, because at least the crime syndicate is selling something that people would willingly buy, i.e. drugs, guns, liquor.  But the State is forcing you to buy at gun point products that will likely kill you anyway i.e. the U.S. destructive foreign policy, obamacare, or regulation limiting free market ingenuity.
     It's critical that we realize our situation with sober thought if we are going to have a future for ourselves or future generations.

Recommended reading:
 Chaos Theory, 
The Menace of the Herd
Our Enemy the State

Saturday, October 13, 2012

The Greatest Good

    What is the greatest good? A libertarian friend recently stated with finality that Liberty is the greatest moral good in the world.  This shows a confusion as to what liberty is.  Liberty is a premise within which infinite variation of events could occur.  Liberty is choice, freedom, and Independence from coercive elements.  Without Liberty morality has no meaning, morality assumes a free moral agent making the good or bad choice.  Doing a moral act such as feeding a homeless man is made irrelevant when that morality is forced by a coercive government who takes from you to give to the hungry.  You didn't give because you recognized the value of that homeless persons life, but you gave to prevent the state from exercising violence against you.  The situation becomes worst still because once the hungry man is full the state is either helpless or uninterested in this mans intrinsic value.  On the other hand, if a free individual were to invest in the betterment of a hungry person, they would not feel that that investment had a good return if the hungry man was simply given a single meal.  The free person might use a variety of investment options which would have varying results.  There already is a thriving market of competitive charities, all of which result in much more significant life change on the part of the beneficiary.  While upward mobility is almost unheard of among those on welfare, the situation is very different when it comes to private sector charities.  It's driven by the same factors which cause other aspects of a free market to far surpass government programs.  The investors are looking for certain results and if the charities in question do not show those results then those charitable dollars go elsewhere.  Compare the insanity of U.S. foreign aid, which almost exclusively lines the pockets of dictators with the Christian international organization World Vision, who allows individuals to provide food, shelter, and education to one child somewhere around the world for $35/month.  The idiocy and irrelevance of government is undeniable.  Within tyranny charity becomes impotent and immoral since the act is usually used as a tactic to shackle the lower class to the ruling class which gave them this utterly useless aid.  On the other hand, within liberty, actions have meaning and they are done without coercion.  Tyranny is evil, But Liberty is the potential for good.