I heard a great podcast episode that really cleared away some fog in my understanding of “what’s wrong with the USA”!
The guest, Randall Holcombe, made the point that we no longer live under the system of “Market Capitalism”, but under a NEW system of “Political Capitalism”.
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Political capitalism is an economic and political system in which the economic and political elite cooperate for their mutual benefit. The economic elite influence the government’s economic policies to use regulation, government spending, and the design of the tax system to maintain their elite status in the economy. The political elite are then supported by the economic elite which helps the political elite maintain their status; an exchange relationship that benefits both the political and economic elite.
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He translated Karl Marx’s “oppression of classes” into “those with political influence oppress those without it”. Occupy Wall Street’s “the 1% oppress the 99%”.
It makes perfect sense as an explanation of how things are now working.
- Argue against smoking but then giving tax subsidies to tobacco farmers.
- Decry obesity but give “parity payments” to sugar producers.
- Ethanol in gas means a payoff to farmers and raises food prices.
- Bailouts of the “fat cat Wall Streeters” as opposed to the people being foreclosed on.
And on, and on, and on!
I didn’t hear a lot of solutions except for: (1) strongly objecting to anyone seeking “transfers from the public to the privileged individuals; and (2) opposition to every extension of Gooferment into every day life.
# – # – # – # – # 2019-May-16 @ 10:24