‘Socialism for the rich, free enterprise for the rest’

I never thought Christopher Hitchens and my old pal Mark Thwaite could agree on anything, but this is where we are.

This is Hitchens on the global crash, via Hak Mao:

Another feature of a banana republic is the tendency for tribal and cultish elements to flourish at the expense of reason and good order. Did it not seem quite bizarre, as the first vote on the rescue of private greed by public money was being taken, that Congress should adjourn for a religious holiday—Rosh Hashanah—in a country where the majority of Jews are secular? What does this say, incidentally, about the separation of religion and government? And am I the only one who finds it distinctly weird to reflect that the last head of the Federal Reserve and the current head of the Treasury, Alan Greenspan and Hank ‘The Hammer’ Paulson, should be respectively the votaries of the cults of Ayn Rand and Mary Baker Eddy, two of the battiest females ever to have infested the American scene? That Paulson should have gone down on one knee to Speaker Nancy Pelosi, as if prayer and beseechment might get the job done, strikes me as further evidence that sheer superstition and incantation have played their part in all this. Remember the scene at the end of Peter Pan, where the children are told that, if they don’t shout out aloud that they all believe in fairies, then Tinker Bell’s gonna fucking die? That’s what the fall of 2008 was like, and quite a fall it was, at that.

And this is Mark’s eloquent and charged commentary:

A considered and detailed debunking of the term ‘confidence’ really needs to take place. That the global economy is in such tatters because of a lack of ‘confidence’, a lack of faith in other words, is astonishing proof of the validity of Marx’s theory of reification, but beyond that shows that a profound irrationality sits at the heart of the global social system. A social system that claims it can never be bettered or changed or destroyed is, it clearly turns out, based almost entirely on our faith in it! The astonishing amount of energy — and money — being mobilised by governments, politicians and journalists to try to keep us keeping the faith shows clearly that it is time for us all to dream again of better worlds.

Hak Mao is right – this is not a move to socialism (although it’s not impossible that the damage done by freemarket dogma may lead to a more Keynesian-style interventionist economy). This is a monstrous bailout awarded to those who gamble with other peoples’ money and lives.

socialism-rich1

(Image copyright The Weblog)

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s


%d bloggers like this: