The Big Picture
Modern Organized Greed
For many readers of this website, the
simple truth is that you live in a developed (industrialized) nation that has a steadily declining economy. Your government
will never say this, because it rightfully fears inciting public panic.
The Bad News
Now the bad
news. There simply is no easy way out. And no one knows how far the decline will go, or how painful the decline will be.
As you personally witness the
decline, many are seeing reductions in rights and freedoms. Some are losing the right to privacy, the right to have public
protests — as well as freedom to travel freely without government checkpoints, and freedom of the press.
government isn’t stupid. It knows all about the trends. And it is busy making preparations for inevitable worsening
Why is all of this happening? It’s basically the consequence of a combination of things that include: overpopulation
(elsewhere), increased globalization, excessive consumerism, corporate greed, government corruption, advances in technology,
and years of public ignorance and apathy.
The Good News
for the good news. Your nation’s government is doing everything it can to slow the decline down to a crawl.
It’s a bit like trying to put a train wreck into slow motion, or very carefully landing a jumbo jet that’s running
low on fuel. You want to slow it all down. Give your people a chance to adjust. Minimize the casualties and property damage.
Buy as much time as possible, so you can put emergency provisions in place. Prepare for the worst, and hope for the best.
Decline of Developed Nations
The 1950s and 1960s
In the 1950s and 1960s, a limited number of inexpensive products were made in only a few nations with
very low wages. “Cheap” meant made in Taiwan, Japan, or Korea.
Back then, some of your citizens recognized the potential
long-term danger inherent in this trend. However, they were demonized as advocates of protectionism and isolationism, which
were branded as counterproductive, old-fashioned, irrational, selfish, evil, and ethnocentric. Some politicians and mass media
pundits joined in on this.
They failed to bravely say the truth: The long-term solution to end other nations’ poverty was by population
reduction through preventive birth control. It was not through sending jobs and food to them. But this idea was considered
taboo and even evil.
The young and middle-aged of your nation had not experienced the economic hard times of the past. So they were optimistic
that prosperity would last forever. Individuals spent excessively on many things. And their government spent excessively on
excessive military forces
- retirement of the elderly (having unplanned, increasing lifespans)
- welfare (entitlements) for the poor, disabled, and
corporate welfare (tax breaks) for businesses offering jobs
- education and healthcare
By about the 1960s, your nation had become very materialistic. It felt that happiness
was found in having and consuming more material things. Of course, millions of the repeated messages to “buy now”
in print, radio, and TV advertising contributed to this. If you don’t believe this, ask yourself why businesses spend
billions on advertising their repeated messages?
In the 1970’s, your nation made laws allowing “free trade” with very big, overpopulated
nations having billions of people willing to work for ultra-low wages. The massive wage gap remains. Today, worldwide minimum
wages range from about $US 0.25 to 8.50 per hour. Millions of jobs were lost to those nations.
Who made the decision to open the floodgates
to the ocean of ultra-cheap labor? Your government, with this decision being influenced by the following:
- Big corporations seeking greater wealth for
their executives and stock holders — investors living in your nation such as fund managers of retirement plans, insurance
companies, and banks. Of course, they also included individuals who could afford to buy stocks.
- Overall public desire for “a better
life”, which meant having and consuming more things. Politicians could look like heroes for giving this to them.
- Overall public ignorance about
the long-term effects.
- National security interests. Lifting big (nuclear armed) nations out of worsening poverty could prevent them from
waging future wars for resources, as their acts of desperation.
The Avert Nuclear War Theory
Vietnam War (1955 to 1975) became a proxy war between China and the US. China’s victory was a sign of its unbending
determination, and perhaps its desperation to gain access to resources. Today Vietnam is the third largest oil producer of
Southeast Asia; and China is its chief trading partner.
In 1979 the US and China signed a free trade agreement; other nations soon followed. In that same year,
China first applied its one-child policy. It sounds like a secret deal was made to avoid another Vietnam War. Developed nations
would help lift China out of poverty by giving it jobs, if China would help itself by controlling its population growth.
“The deal” would avoid future wars for resources — which would be desperate acts of almost any nation
dealing with worsening poverty. This would also reduce the potential for those wars escalating into nuclear war. US Presidents
Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, and Nixon all looked at using nuclear weapons to end the Vietnam War. Surely China did too.
The Greed and Corruption Theory
If there wasn't any "deal" to
avert nuclear war, then the following two things probably happened.
1) China had the wisdom to control its population
growth to avoid worsening poverty.
2) The short-sighted greed of powerful corporations caused them to influence
governments of developed nations to make decisions that would greatly harm the public interest and greatly reward their
self-interest. (All corporate charters place self-interest ahead of public interest.) They influenced easily-corrupted
government officials to give them access to massive amounts of ultra-cheap labor and massive new markets —
in China, India, and other huge, overpopulated nations. This ensured their massive profit-making for many decades.
The Sales Pitch
The government, powerful corporations, and, in many cases, corporate-owned
mass media "sold" this plan to many developed nations by emphasizing that massive amounts of cheap
products would be made available to the public, and there would be major reductions in environmental pollution (from
factories to power plants).
But they failed to say the following things any economics professor could
- The overall public benefit would be short-term (two to three decade).
- This would cause long-term drawbacks of massive, continuous loss of jobs and the dismantling
of almost all factories.
- Within two decades, the sustainable manufacturing-based economies of many developed
nations would likely be transformed into unsustainable service-based economies.
- This transformation
would likely result in ever-increasing debt due to trade imbalances.
- This growing debt would eventually
lead some nations into bankruptcy and possible social chaos, with almost no practical way to avoid it — or
to quickly recover from it after hitting bottom. It would take decades to rebuild a manufacturing base and
to recondition citizens to being content with owning far fewer things and being tolerant of increased pollution.
These powerful corporations basically sold out the citizens of the developed nations for their own excessive self-interest
(greed). And many of these same corporations had, and many still have, their headquarters in the same nations they
Propaganda to Thwart Opposition
Whether free trade with huge, poor (nuclear armed) nations was to avert
nuclear war or to satisfy corporate greed, the citizens of developed nations needed to be persuaded
into accepting the impending, massive loss of jobs.
So anyone who opposed a harmless-sounding “free
trade agreement” was branded — by corrupt (and sometimes ignorant) politicians and mass media icons
— as an advocate of protectionist and isolationist policies. And those policies were repeatedly demonized,
by the same politicians and media icons, as being old-fashioned, counterproductive, selfish, misinformed, nutty,
and practically evil.
Advocates of protectionism and isolationism were openly ridiculed for failing to see
the enormous benefits to their country. And they were made to appear like alarmists, exaggerators, and closed-minded, fossilized
buffoons of the early 1900s.
The public was purposefully made to confuse gradations of
protectionism with total isolationism. Isolationism is what it sounds like: being isolated. This implies non-involvement
in the affairs of other nations.
Before the 1970s, the attitude of isolationism had been demonized for
decades, by mass media, as the dangerous type of thinking, the major factor, that contributed to America's
(and other nations') reluctance to assist in containing Nazi aggression in its early stages.
is the polar opposite. It has military bases in 93 other nations. It is often called "the world's policeman."
In turn, it is sometimes viewed as meddling, intimidating, and waging wars for profit. Sometimes, it is hated because of those
things. It is also paying a huge price for its global military presence, as its massive military budget is greatly
contributing its economic downfall.
Results of Free Trade Agreements with Huge Poor Countries
Inexpensive foreign-made goods quickly came flooding into your nation. Many in your nation enjoyed their newfound ability
to have and consume many more things. At the same time, your fellow citizens lost their jobs in one industry after another.
Textiles. Apparel. Footwear. Appliances. Kitchenware. Electronics. Optical Equipment. Telecommunications equipment. Medical
equipment. Tools. Furniture. Auto parts. Machinery. Steel and aluminum processing. Railcars. Ships. Aircraft. Weapons. Etc.
While these goods were flooding in, many in your nation looked the other away, because they felt powerless to do anything,
or they minimized the trend’s danger because they believed it would never eventually hurt them too.
Your imports began to steadily exceed your
exports. Your nation lost its manufacturing base and became a service-based economy, which is unsustainable if imports exceed
exports. You can’t export healthcare, construction, education, food service, lodging, insurance, sales, dry-cleaning,
lawn-care, hairstyling, pedicures, etc.
Technology Added to Job Losses
Adding to the loss of jobs to foreign nations
was the increasing loss due to advances in technology. Many more computers and automated machinery began doing much more work.
The 1980s and 1990s
the 1980s, advances in communication systems, especially the Internet, began to enable the increasing export of many service
jobs, such as those in data processing (billing), customer service (call centers), computer programming, engineering, drafting,
composite news writing, etc.
By this time, your nation was transformed
into having a service-based economy, with a very expensive lifestyle. The only way your nation’s government could sustain
this was to borrow. So it borrowed from prospering nations like China and other Asian nations. And it borrowed from its own
future generations, which would inherit government debt. Individuals sustained their lifestyle by borrowing from banks. Loans
were still easy to get.
Some of this borrowed money helped maintain
jobs in, and related to, the construction industry. This is an industry that doesn’t export things. Demand for this
industry’s products was high, because people had access to lots of borrowed money. High demand produced inflated prices.
But many bought the overpriced houses. And businesses used borrowed money for expansion and new buildings. Government continued
to spend borrowed money on big construction projects, social programs, and the military.
The 2000s and 2010s
After about a decade of this spending
spree, reality began to set in. Individuals, businesses, and the government began having trouble making loan payments. There
were increasing loan failures and complete bankruptcies — of individuals, and of small and big businesses. Soon the
housing bubble burst. And the construction (service) industry collapsed.
The government postponed declaring its bankruptcy by printing more money, to use in making its massive loan payments —
and to prevent collapse of the banking industry. It basically spread out the concentrated losses of bank loan failures. This
loss would be spread out over all holders of its debt notes: its own citizens and foreigners (holding tons of paper IOUs,
like dollars and treasury bills).
This massive expansion of IOU notes de-valued your currency, which devalued
your savings. This contributed to big increases in the price of tangible things like gold and black gold (oil). Between 2000
and now, gold went from $270 to $1500 per ounce, and oil went from $30 to $100 per barrel. Of course, growing global demand
for those things also increased their price.
As a result of the
construction industry collapse, unemployment and under-employment (part-time and overqualified work) grew rapidly. This pain
spread through your economy. Besides unemployment, you saw some wages stalling and others falling. Employee benefits were
reduced or ended. As savings lost value, more people nearing retirement decided to stay in their jobs and recover from their
losses. This added to the unemployment problem. People suddenly saw the cost of everything go up. Even domestically produced
food prices went up. Why? Imported oil is used in almost every step of making, transporting, and storing most things.
Worldwide, other nations saw your nation’s decreasing ability to repay its debt, so they didn’t
value your debt notes as much — euros, dollars, treasury bills, etc. So they exchanged them for other nations’
debt notes and for real things like gold. This further increased the number of your nation’s notes available on the
global market, and further de-valued your currency. At the same
time, your nation continued to print more debt notes so that its people could keep buying foreign exports,
and so that it could keep making its increasing loan payments.
A nation's currency devaluation
harms its ordinary citizens the most. It also enables foreigners (with more valuable currencies) to buy your nation's
things at lower prices. They may buy a bit more of your exports, but not enough to restore your manufacturing base. They will
buy much more of your raw materials to use in their factories.
If your nation's currency becomes extremely
devalued, its desperate citizens will sell their private assets to them, such as land, buildings, and factories.
If your government becomes desperate, it will sell public assets such as highways/toll-ways, power generation
facilities, utility networks, airports, seaports, etc.
Economic Decline of Lesser-Developed
Some of the lesser-developed
nations, such as several Middle Eastern and African nations, are also in economic decline. They are mainly experiencing
the results of the following:
- Overpopulation due to outdated religious ideologies that prohibit the use of birth control measures.
- Decreasing ability to export their limited
natural resources (like oil), due to higher extraction costs as supplies decrease and as internal need for them increases.
- Continued lack of manufacturing jobs for a few reasons. People did not need to work for ultra-low wages in the past,
while factories were being built elsewhere. Their nations lack the developed infrastructure (roads, utilities, ports) needed
to attract manufacturing business. Instability and dangers due to religious ideologies discourage foreign investment. And
your nation’s leaders looted and plundered some of its wealth that should have been used to build infrastructure and
develop domestic industries.
The Here and Now
Now You Know
Now you know why and how your nation entered
long-term economic decline. The big questions that remain are: How low will it go, and how painful will it be?
Your nation has to deal with not only managing
very big — and growing — painful public and private debt. It also has to deal with the reality that there is no
painless, long-term way out. Its government is doing everything it can to postpone declaring its already de facto bankruptcy.
It continues to borrow. It continues to print more debt notes. It increasingly scales back government programs (austerity
measures), but this adds to unemployment. And when it finally scales back its military, this will also add to unemployment
of people trained to fight and kill.
One thing that the government is spending more on is surveillance and police strength — because
it must. It knows that social unrest will grow, public protests will increase, and public venting (through destruction and
violence) will increase. The public already has a general sense that it is now “every man for himself”. Those
who are employed gladly work ever harder to keep their jobs. And the unemployed compete harder for limited job openings. Of
course, some have completely given up and are merely waiting for “the other shoe to drop”.
But Nations Like America Appear to be Recovering
still believe nations are able to recover from economic decline. They see things like prospering stock markets and falling
America’s stock markets are improving while its economy is declining.
Why? Many corporations have factories and jobs in other nations. And as billions of poor people earn more, they can spend
more on the things corporations produce. An ocean of ultra-cheap labor remains, while global demand for goods and services
increases. So there is still plenty of profit to be made by corporations and investors in corporate stock markets. And interest
rates on savings are so low that many more people have invested in stocks to stay ahead of the inflation rate.
America’s unemployment rate is falling. Why? The number of low paying jobs has increased. Today, one in four Americans
works at a job paying less than $10 per hour.
American poverty remains at an all time high. Roughly 16% of its population lives in poverty; this includes
almost 20% of its children. Each year 3.4 million Americans experience homelessness; 1.4 million of them are children.
America's combined public and private debt totals $48 trillion. Averaged out over its population of 314 million,
each American's share of this debt is $153,000.
How will your nation ever get out of its massive and growing debt? Some short-term solutions include
Exchange natural resources (minerals, metals, oil, forest products, etc) and public assets (infrastructure, roads, utilities,
ports) for foreign debt reduction.
- Wage war to steal resources from other nations, and exchange them for foreign debt reduction. (China and
India get most of Iraq’s oil.)
Some long-term solutions include:
- Reduce government programs (social programs and military).
- Have the wealthiest pay more taxes. Tax profits from investments in multinational
- Create more jobs at
home by buying more domestically-made products, which are usually much more expensive. In other words, you must consume much
less to make jobs for your fellow citizens.
- Return to national policies of protectionism and isolationism. Ease the transition by having steadily increasing
import tariffs until prices of domestically-produced goods become competitive. This too requires a public willingness to pay much
higher prices and, in turn, consume much less.
- Move your investments to corporations with lots of jobs in your nation.
America: An Emerging Police State
An example of an emerging police state is the U.S. For example, in 2012 its Congress and President
enacted the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The NDAA gives the President the power to authorize the secret arrest,
detention, imprisonment, torture, and execution of any person in America (including U.S. citizens) deemed a significant threat
to national security. The NDAA eliminates many provisions of the U.S. Constitution and its Bill of Rights, which protect the
rights and freedoms of Americans. However, martial law has been declared in the U.S. on previous occasions.
An increasing amount of
public tax money is being spent on police and military personnel and equipment inside the U.S. The troops have returned home
from Iraq. As far as equipment for domestic policing goes, in 2012 America's Department of Homeland Security (DHS) ordered
1.6 billion bullets and 2,700 armored military vehicles, as well as thousands of assault rifles.
Across America, DHS has conducted training seminars
with the clergy of diverse religious groups to train them in assisting maintaining order during an emergency. This training
included encouraging church members to obey all government orders. Note that during Hurricane Katrina, all citizens’
were told to surrender their guns to government forces collecting them door-to-door.
Surely, the U.S. government knows that the nation’s
steady economic decline is guaranteed due to its enormous $17 trillion public debt, its $31 trillion private debt, the loss
of its manufacturing base, and an overall sense of entitlement to a very expensive lifestyle.
Stages of Growing Social Unrest
As poverty increases, so does social unrest.
And then police forces must be increased to deal with it.
Early on, the government studies the situation and realizes that an inevitable worsening trend
is in place. They are not sure how far down the economy will decline. They are not sure how the public will react to each
stage of the decline.
So they prepare for the worst and hope for the best. They put laws in place that vastly
increase government surveillance and law enforcement powers. They increase surveillance of communication and transportation
networks. They increase the number of police personnel. They may invent new national police agencies so the true size of this
increase is not recognized at more local levels. They increase purchases of weapons, bullets, vehicles, and other equipment
needed by police forces.
More people vent their frustration and anger about becoming poorer through peaceful protests and social media. Some hope
for improvement remains. Government leaders give repeated promises of hope and change to keep people calm, and to “give
hope a chance”.
Then as conditions worsen, public frustration, anger, and despair grow.
More protests occur. They become more
organized. They become bigger.
An increasing number of protests become violent. At times, outsiders incite the violence. The government uses this
violence as justification to further reduce rights and freedoms, and increase spending on police forces.
to get money increase throughout society (theft, prostitution, black markets, drug dealing, etc.). The very wealthy are shielded
from most of this in their well-protected residential and work areas. More of the wealthy “dress down” when they
are among the public.
More people start venting their frustration in destructive ways. Some destroy things around them (arson,
vandalism, etc.). Some harm their weaker family members; there is increased spousal abuse, child abuse, and elderly abuse.
Some begin to destroy themselves. They numb their mental suffering (loss of self-respect, depression) and physical suffering
(hunger, fatigue) through alcohol and drugs.
Efforts are made to divert public attention away from their problems. Mass media is sometimes used for this.
In extreme cases, a small war or major false-flag event is orchestrated for this.
Individual acts of aggression (including violence) against falsely perceived
threats increase. These “threats” are usually nearby poor people who are minorities of a different race, religion,
nationality, and/or immigration status).
Membership and active participation in extremist groups (race hate groups, anti-immigrant groups, ultra-conservative
political groups) increases.
The government further reduces rights and freedoms.
Organized class warfare groups form. Police surveillance of communications
(telephone, Internet, etc.) increases. Arrests and interrogations increase.
Censorship increases. Warnings to
the public are issued. Public examples are made out of some engaging in organized class warfare.
of people live in fear and chaos. This grows into social chaos, which endangers the orderly functioning of society. A total
police state is now required to restore and maintain order. There are widespread arrests and detentions. Prioritized lists
are used, with organizers and inciters of illegal activity at the top.
Government promises are given that the
police state is only temporary. Everyone should remain calm and obey authorities without question. Religious clergy are used
to promote this message.
The Ending Isn't So Bad
many DIED nations are in a very slow decline and will remain so for several more years. France is in a
slow decline. Spain and Portugal are in a fast decline. And Greece is in a very fast decline.
Sure, in the long-term, it really is game over for many DIED nations. The curtain is
closing. Elvis is leaving the building. But the ending isn’t so bad. It
just means an end to some of the world as you know it. It means that many of you will become poorer. Which means many
will not be able to consume as much — of everything: energy, food, water, shelter, clothing,
services, gadgets, and entertainment.
Through your reduced consumption, you will reduce your part in polluting
the earth through the extraction, processing, transporting, storing, retailing, and disposing of all the things you consume.
You can comfort yourself by thinking about this
as being part of egalitarianism at a global scale. Consider your reduced standard of living the price to pay for a
somewhat more fair redistribution of the world’s resources. Many more people will still remain much poorer
than you. Industrializing nations like China, India, Pakistan and other smaller ones,
together have one-half of the world’s population. China and India together have one-third. Most of the people in these
nations are very poor. But they’ve been lifted out of poverty. The average annual income in China is now about $6,300,
and in India it's $5,400.
Of course there’s an exception. The top 1%, the upper-class and extremely wealthy in all nations, will continue
to profit from their investments. They will maintain their standard of living. A police state will protect them. That will
be a bitter pill to swallow for many. So try to not dwell on it. It’s always been that
way. There simply are more of them than in the days of kings and queens.
Your nation may emerge from all this as much less materialistic, much more
responsible consumers, and more humble with a greatly reduced sense of entitlement. It may also have greater empathy
for the poor of other nations.
After our nations can no longer afford massive
militaries, China will likely emerge as the world’s military superpower. It’s already the world’s economic
superpower. If China follows in America’s footsteps, and expands its military presence globally, there may be problems.
They may pretend to have a democracy, but they are a police state. Just as they pretend to be communists, but they are
really capitalists — with wealth disparity that goes with it. China has over 100,000 millionaires and a growing
number of billionaires.
time, your nation will rebuild its economy — just as England, Germany, and Argentina did after their economies went
through significant declines.
During the transition, as we lose some of our possessions
and comforts, let’s not also lose our dignity and self-respect — or our respect for the dignity of others. Let’s
not get drawn into race wars and class wars. Let’s not blindly lash out at our fellow citizens for things we’ve
done to ourselves — and ignorantly allowed a few others do to us.
What else can you do during the transition? Take some time to enjoy the simple things
of life. Try to maintain your happiness, and be thankful for the basic necessities of life.
A Ridiculous Glimmer of Hope
There is a rather ridiculous
glimmer of hope. Genius inventors could develop advanced technologies that save the day for everyone. They could invent a
machine that produces clean, abundant energy from almost nothing. And they could invent a machine that produces any physical
thing (food, clothing, gadgets, etc.) by rearranging atoms — a super-advanced 3D photocopier like the “replicator”
on Star Trek.
If we were had these inventions, everyone could afford to reproduce without end. So everyone would
need to agree to limit their population growth, and slowly depopulate the earth to a level that’s more in balance with
earlier, that’s a rather ridiculous glimmer of hope. But, at the very least, inventors may create new technologies that
result in new jobs.
Overpopulation is when a population exceeds the carrying
capacity of its environment. In most countries, the poor produce more children than any other group. Many of them have more
children than they're able to care for.
We live in a world with a global labor pool and a global marketplace.
So, overpopulation in one part of the world
now impacts much of the rest of the world.
At the current rate of world population growth, there’ll
be 9 billion in 2050.
give you a better understanding, in 2007 the world grew by more than 200,000 per day; and in 2009, it grew by more than 272,000.
The world’s useable farm land divided by its population averages to about one acre (0.4 hectare) per person.
More than one billion people struggle to live on less than one dollar per day.
More than three billion
struggle to live on about two dollars per day.
More than 840 million go hungry every day.
wages range from about $0.24 to $8.50 per hour.
Corrupt leaders of governments and businesses encourage fast growing populations
to get more people to rule over, to buy the things they sell, and to work for lower wages.
Corrupt leaders of religions
encourage fast growing populations to get more followers who, in turn, give those leaders more money and power.
Around the World
As overpopulation occurs in some nations, the following things happen
in many nations around the world:
Wages remain low or fall.
The prices of goods and services increase.
More people have to work harder
simply to afford the necessities of life.
More people have to borrow money. As demand for loans grows, lenders can increase interest
Earth's limited resources are consumed faster. So it gets more difficult and expensive to extract what remains.
In almost all countries, poverty is growing the fastest for the young, minorities, less educated, and people with fixed incomes
— like many elderly.
The gap between the very rich and others becomes more visible. Since the early 1900s, the gap
between the world’s poorest 20% and the richest 20% grew by three times. Today, the world’s poorest 20% use less
than 2% of the world’s goods. And the world’s richest 20% use more than 80%. The worldwide gap grew more in the
past 3 years than in the previous 12 years.
There's more fighting over resources at local to national levels. Divisions grow along
backgrounds of race, nationality, religion, and culture.
Some governments incite wars to eliminate some of their
poor and distract others from daily problems.
More people get ill due to unsanitary living conditions and unaffordable healthcare. Disease
spreads. New diseases develop.
More people abuse alcohol and drugs to numb their despair and frustration. Other increasingly
use stimulating substances so they can work more.
More people show disrespect and contempt toward law enforcement
More people steal. More money is spent to protect property and personal safety, which results in less being spent
on things that could benefit society.
Public protests grow and become more violent. Ultimately organized class warfare grows.
places with severe overpopulation, land, water and air become badly polluted. Resources run out. Malnutrition and starvation
As social unrest and crime rates increase, nations, out of necessity, increasingly become police states.
in Developed (Industrialized) Nations
occurs in some parts of the world, the following things happen in many developed (industrialized) nations:
Jobs are lost to nations with
much lower wages.
and underemployment increase.
Wages fall for the remaining jobs. Work hours are reduced. Job benefits are reduced or eliminated.
More people and businesses go
bankrupt. More people lose their homes to bank foreclosures.
Many of the rich remain financially secure because their investments are in
multinational corporations that profit from low wages and from growing global demand for goods and services.
Income and property taxes
are raised to pay for:
Decreased revenue from lost income taxes and business taxes.
- Increasing numbers of poor people receiving government assistance.
- Growing demand
for public services needed by increasing numbers of immigrants entering from much poorer nations.
- Increased business tax breaks
(tax incentives) used to attract job-producing businesses.
- Increased government operating costs.
- Increased police and military forces
needed to deal with worsening social problems.
Poverty grows and social unrest increases.
Modern Organized Greed (MOG)
“The end of democracy and the defeat of the American Revolution
will occur when government falls into the hands of lending institutions and moneyed incorporations.”
- U.S. President Thomas Jefferson
"I see in the
near future a crisis approaching that unnerves me and causes me to tremble for the safety of my country. As a result of the
war, corporations have been enthroned and an era of corruption in high places will follow, and the money power of the country
will endeavor to prolong its reign by working upon the prejudices of the people until all wealth is aggregated in a few hands
and the Republic is destroyed.”
- U.S. President Abraham
"In the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence,
whether sought or unsought, by the military-industrial complex. The potential for the disastrous rise of misplaced power exists
and will persist. We must never let the weight of this combination endanger our liberties or democratic processes."
- U.S. President Dwight D. Eisenhower
People need a healthy level of self-interest
to survive. Having too much of it is greed.
For thousands of years there have been greedy people. But over
the past two centuries, technology has enabled greed to become extremely organized at a global level. This modern
organized greed has evolved into big corporations that are extremely wealthy and powerful.
Globalization has profited many
corporations. It’s nothing new. It’s as old as Marco Polo and Christopher Columbus. It’s simply been speeded
up by advances in technology that have improved transportation and communication — as well as information processing.
The globalization of trade includes worldwide networks linking production and marketplaces. Globalization also includes the
Overpopulation has profited corporations. It has resulted in lower wages in many developed nations and increased
worldwide demand for goods and services.
Advances in technology, globalization and overpopulation have all helped corporations
become much bigger.
How big are they? By 1999, 51 of the world’s 100 largest economies were those of corporations.
So some corporations are now more powerful than many nations. Does this surprise you? Who owns the biggest buildings? Long
ago it was big religious organizations. Then it was big governments. And now it’s big corporations.
Many corporations, and their employees, are not intentionally greedy.
They are only trying to achieve the goals of their corporate charters. All corporations have corporate charters with self-interest
as a first priority — to make a profit (sometimes an increasing one) for their shareholders. Their second or ambiguously
ranked priority is to protect the public interest — to at least not harm society.
Not all corporations harm societies.
Some try to balance serving their self-interest with protecting the public interest. Multi-national corporations deal with
conflicting interests of different nations' publics, as well as conflicting allegiances.
People around the world have shares of corporations.
The investments of many retirement funds, insurance companies, and banks are in stock shares of corporations.
practice social responsibility. They recognize the long-term benefit to themselves and others. Corporate social responsibility
(CSR) is also called corporate conscience, corporate citizenship, social performance, and sustainable responsible business.
It is self-regulation. A business monitors and ensures its compliance with the spirit of local to national laws, society’s
ethical standards, and international norms. Sometimes businesses go further and do things for social good, such as donating
to charities or sponsoring public safety advertising campaigns (drink alcohol responsibly).
Some investors are now taking
matters into their own hands. They are conscientiously limiting their investments to socially responsible corporations. For
example, some investors don’t buy stocks in corporations that produce weapons, tobacco, alcohol, genetically modified
foods, toxic fertilizers and pesticides, etc.
The Term “MOG”
To describe the group of corporations with greedy leaders who abuse their corporation’s
wealth and power, the term Modern Organized Greed (MOG) will be used here. Some of them use their corporation’s wealth
and power to influence government decisions in ways that harm societies. Some do this through bribes and intimidation. Others
do this by corrupting the processes that democracies use to elect their representatives, by giving extremely large campaign
contributions to their favored candidates, and by buying up mass media that they use to bias public opinion, for and against,
candidates for public office.
The Beginning of Corporations
Long ago, businesses were owned by individuals and small groups.
Corporations were made to enable many people to own pieces, shares, of a business. To do this, legal documents call corporate
charters were invented to enable businesses to incorporate. The word “incorporate” means to make something into
a something like the body of a person without a conscience, a corpse.
first charters were made in America, in the early 1800s. Their original goal, besides allowing many people to own shares of
a business, was to protect the public interest. Public interest came first. Corporate profit came second.
By the mid-1800s, corporations had gained enough wealth and power to influence government
decision-making, in nations around the world. They used this power to legally change charters so that making a profit became
the first goal, and protecting the public interest came second.
charters give businesses the legal rights of a person — called the status of personhood. These include rights to do
- Sue and be sued.
- Own things in their name.
- Hire and fire people.
- Make contracts with people and other
- Make laws that govern the actions inside them.
Charters also give businesses special legal protections — called limited liability. These protections go beyond
those of a person, and include the following:
- Protection from
debt. If a corporation owes much money, or goes bankrupt, investors don’t have to pay the debts.
- Protection from criminal penalties. If a corporation commits a crime, investors don’t
have to pay fines or go to jail.
- Protection from lawsuit. If a corporation
harms people, investors can’t be sued or arrested.
Charters also give businesses the
power to live forever, by not setting any termination date.
Unfortunately, charters can’t give businesses a sense of shame, a sense of right and wrong. This is why some appear
to do harm without care.
Fortunately, corporations have to deal with societies (of nations) shaming them. But
unfortunately, the really big ones, multinational corporations, avoid this by locating their facilities in other nations,
with different social norms. For example, some corporations have inhumane and unsafe working conditions. Social norms result
in legal definitions of what is inhumane and unsafe. Likewise, corporations may produce dangerous levels of pollution. Societies
form legal definitions of what is a dangerous level. Nations with governments that oppress public dissension and limit freedom
of speech leave their citizens wide open to corporate abuse.
This all sounds like every corporation can become some type of indestructible, resource-consuming, profit-hungry, dangerous,
heartless creature — a zombie, a Frankenstein. Remember, not all corporations abuse their power. But some have, and
we’re starting to see the results. Perhaps the "Zombie Apocalypse" began back in Lincoln’s day, and
for two centuries, we’ve been blind to it because the in-corpse-orated creatures didn’t appear ugly or dangerous.
They still have beautiful office buildings, wonderful advertising slogans, pretty logos, and well-dressed, polite leaders.
Were We Warned?
at the top of this section say we were warned.
U.S. President Jefferson warned
us long before charters were changed to place profit first. He must have projected their trend into the far future. Later,
Lincoln warned us in harsher terms. He must have seen the dangerous trend taking shape. Eisenhower was the last courageous
president to warn us. He gave an ominous, almost paranoid-sounding warning.
described the dangerous rise of corporate influence over government — at all levels. His warning focused on the
most deadly aspect of it: the military-industrial (corporate) complex. He didn’t focus on the food-industry complex.
What future dangers did he see? Perhaps, the build up of a needlessly massive, expensive military and endless
justifications for it (such as the endless need for America to be the world policeman). The creation of tensions between other
nations and profit from selling weapons to them. The buying up and misuse of most mass media to instill exaggerated fears
in society — so that vast profits could be made from preparing for war, waging war, and rebuilding after war. If you
project those profitable militaristic trends forward, you end up with many more wars — possibly resulting in WWIII.
Maybe Eisenhower wasn’t so paranoid after all. Good thing he gave his warning
in his presidential farewell speech. He certainly didn’t want to get assassinated. As a retired president, he represented
little threat to the status quo. Years later, along came peace-mongering President Kennedy. He should have appreciated Eisenhower’s
wisdom, and given his speeches on worldwide disarmament after leaving office.
How expensive has the military
become? .Each year, the world’s combined annual military budget is $1.3 trillion. This doesn’t include off-the-record
funds. Many nations prepare for wars against the same nations they do billions of dollars of trade with. Does that make
much do the biggest spenders spend each year? US: $420 billion. China: $90b. Russia: $70b. England: $50b. France: $50b. Germany:
$40b. Japan: $40b.
The biggest weapons exporters are, from biggest to smallest: The U.S., Russia, Germany,
France, the Netherlands (home of the Peace Prize), the U.K., Italy, Spain, China, Sweden, Israel, Canada, Poland, Switzerland, the
Ukraine, South Africa, South Korea, Austria, the Czech Republic, and Belgium.
Who do they sell weapons to? Governments
of all sorts of rich and poor nations. This includes nations ruled by dictators and oligarchies. Later, some of them
secretly transfer these weapons to other, possibly more dangerous entities.
Is this legal? Of course it is. Most
citizens of countries that profit from this don’t really care about what happens in some far away place ruled by dictators.
If they don’t care, why should the corporations or government of their nation care? Only recently in 2013, did the UN
start to address this, by making a rather non-enforceable international agreement on the sale and transfer of some small
Profit from Poverty
and Corrupt Governments
MOG can locate production facilities in many countries.
Obviously, they want to locate them in places that give them the most profit, such as places with cheap labor, relaxed pollution
laws, low corporate taxes, and cooperative governments. These would be places with overpopulation, poverty, and easily corrupted
has had bad consequences for ordinary people in nations with high standards of living, and associated high costs of living.
They’ve lost almost every job that can be shipped out. Of course, people in the profitable locations are exposed to
unhealthy/unsafe work conditions and polluted environments.
Profit from Eliminating Competition
MOG promotes monopolies, which are growing
around the world. Small businesses and family farms are driven out of business. As competition is reduced, prices of goods
and services can be more easily increased.
To ensure profit from existing investments, at times MOG discourages or oppresses the development of
alternative resources. It uses its influence over mass media and governments to do this. Sometimes it just buys up competing
alternatives, from start-up companies to patent rights, and lets these alternatives become forgotten.
Profit from Cruelty to Animals
MOG treats animals with cruelty. This is just a part of the corporate controlled food industry.
Animals are often overcrowded in very confined areas, living in their own filth, with poor ventilation, and being fed things
they would never naturally eat. It should be no surprise that these places not only help spread disease, but are the breeding
grounds for new diseases.
For example, the fish you buy from China likely comes from "fish farms". Some
of these are pools of dirty water, overcrowded with fish that are fed things like the excrement from chickens on grated floors
that falls through, to serve as food for pigs living on grated floors. The pig excrement falls through to the fish ponds below.
Chicken poo becomes pig food, which becomes pig poo, which becomes fish food, which becomes human food. Now that’s extremely
profitable and extremely efficient! It’s no wonder that tilapia fish from China is as cheap as sh#t. We’ve learned
that when bacteria and viruses pass directly through the digestive tracts of various species of animals, serious trouble happens.
Ever wonder how did bird flu started? Ask the migratory birds that ate some of the fish in those dirty poo-filled ponds.
How did mad cow disease start in Europe? MOG fed ground up
(possibly diseased) carcasses of animals to cows. Cows are vegetarians. They were never meant to eat other animals, especially
ground up dead ones. It was very profitable and very efficient, but not as profitable and efficient as feeding poo to animals.
People who ate beef from cows with mad cow disease contracted it. What does it do to you? It turns your brain
into a sponge filled with lots of holes. Moooove over kindness to animals. Heartless MOG doesn’t give a rat’s
a$$, unless of course, MOG can make a profit from grinding up the rat sphincter and feeding it to some other creature.
In other places around the world, chickens are crowded into
warehouses where they spend their lives walking on their own excrement, breathing it in, and tearing at each other. Often,
their beaks are burnt to dull them and reduce the bloodshed. Of course, lots of antibiotics are used to keep animals alive
in these types of conditions, and you guessed it, their germs become resistant to antibiotics. So people end up losing some
modern defenses against diseases.
Profit from Mistreating People
makes unsafe working conditions, and in some places, it treats people worse than animals. Why spend money on safety and comfort,
when a corporation can increase profit by doing otherwise? Why not simply meet only the bare minimum legal requirements for
health and safety of employees, in whichever country they have facilities?
Of course, why even bother with employee
comfort and happiness? Where’s the profit in that? How many Wal-Marts give their clerks’ chairs? Standing in one
spot continuously for many hours simply sounds unhealthy. MOG doesn't care. By May of 2013, Wal-Mart had surpassed Exxon
Benefits of Owning Mass Media
bought up much of mass media in some nations. This has reduced people’s power to have their voices heard. Public protests
are purposely ignored. It has produced biased news that has degraded certain candidates for office, distracted societies from
real problems, and hidden corporate wrong-doing. Further, mass media has been used to incite unfounded fears in societies,
which has led some into war for profit.
Is MOG control of mass
media true? Let’s look at America. 90% of all U.S. mass media is owned by five major corporations — owned directly
and indirectly through subsidiary corporations.
MOG doesn’t care about the citizens of
any one nation. It cares about making greater profit. People in the once prosperous nations are now slowly waking up
to this fact, as their economies decline.
You don’t need to
embrace any of this. You should consider gaining greater awareness and understanding of it, so you don’t
remain in a state of confusion and ignorance and make poor decisions based on false assumptions.
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