‘Foolery, Sir, Doth Walk About The Orb…’

Paul Krugman examines the utter folly of the austerity approach taken by the EC toward the now-admitted shrinking of its nations’ economies. Read his lament in his column Pain Without Gain. In summary, Krugman asserts

For things didn’t have to be this bad. Greece would have been in deep trouble no matter what policy decisions were taken, and the same is true, to a lesser extent, of other nations around Europe’s periphery. But matters were made far worse than necessary by the way Europe’s leaders, and more broadly its policy elite, substituted moralizing for analysis, fantasies for the lessons of history.

I can’t help believing Krugman is right. But I also can’t help seeing through the façade to the bare fact that the Euro-banksters know exactly what they are doing. And there is no assurance, no commitment from leadership, that things won’t continue getting worse, or that that leadership will even try to make them better. David Dayen of FDL offers this observation:

I don’t know how many Eurozone finance meetings have been seen as consequential, but we’ve got another one today, with the Greek bailout as the main topic. Greek leaders hope that the finance ministers will approve the bailout, after they gave final assent to austerity measures. CNBC quotes officials saying the chances are “little higher than 50-50.”

The fundamentals of depression economics have been known for at least seven decades since America and Europe addressed the last great one. What to do is well-known. What not to do is presumably equally well-known. And yet European and American leaders alike, political and financial leaders, are approaching the problem exactly backward to the way that both Keynesian theory and actual experience would indicate. So I can only conclude that the 1% simply don’t give a damn what happens to the 99%, as long as the 1% lead lives of ease and comfort.

All I can say is that they’d better assemble good security armies at their gates. When the social fabric and the social contract begin to fray, so do reasonable expectations of orderly behavior. They want us to sit down and STFU while they hoard for themselves all the goodies we produce? Good luck with that!

CORRECTION: of course it should be not “Foolishness” as I originally misquoted but “Foolery, sir.” It would help if I looked things up even when I’m in a hurry.

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  • Bad Tux (@badtux99)  On Tuesday February 21, 2012 at 12:43 am

    The 1% believe that they’re protected by two things: 1) Nobody knows where they are at any given time because they have homes all over the planet that they reach by private plane and helicopter, and 2) they have installed a very effective police state in most Western countries that monitors everything we say and everything we do. The nature of this police state is disguised by the fact that it allows us to say and do things that are meaningless like type these missives on the Internet — the 1% understand very well that power grows from the barrel of a gun and as long as we’re typing on the Internet we’re not stringing them up from the lamp-posts, so they’re happy to allow us this venting — but it is a police state nonetheless, one which has more people in its gulags than Stalin ever did (and no, I am not exaggerating — the American Gulag a.k.a. prison-industrial complex holds more prisoners than Stalin’s gulags at their peak).

    So the 1% believe they have us under control. And hey, the past 150 years seems to validate that belief, with them managing to conquer the entire world other than North Korea and Cuba. So who’s to say they’re wrong?

    • Steve  On Tuesday February 21, 2012 at 7:21 am

      BadTux, as a classical musician I had occasion to enter the homes of a lot more wealthy people than most of the 99% have seen (some through gated, guarded security). What always astonishes me… when I’m not awed by the fact that wealth does not confer taste… is the wealthy fixation on proving their wealth by sheer acquisition. What do they do with all that stuff? Where do they store it when they have more than a few mansions-full of it?

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