A new report is out that purports to explain the reasons behind the economic meltdown and the resulting Great Recession. Gee, I thought that had been figured out a long time ago... but guess not. The problem with this report, as I see it, is that it blames everybody... which is pretty much the same as blaming nobody. But despite all of that, it “also asserts that the near meltdown did not have to happen.” Well duh, of course it did not “have” to happen... but think of all the people who have profited by it. And think of the fact that they are the same people who were key players in the meltdown to begin with. It's kind of like Pat Buchanan saying that World War II did not have to happen – true enough, and if we could have just gotten rid of Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini, Tojo, Roosevelt, Churchill, etc., and all of their followers, in time, it could all have been avoided. In other words, if half the world had disappeared on the eve of the war, it wouldn't have started. Right. And if a few thousand key players in New York, Washington, Brussels, Zurich, London, etc. had all been run over by buses on the same day, the economic crisis wouldn't have happened either. The point is, it did happen, and it wasn't an accident, or a “perfect storm”, or anything of the sort. All of the so-called failures were planned... and the way we know this is that they weren't failures at all, but wildly successful. They turned trillions of dollars in middle-class money into trillions of dollars in ruling elite money – once again, as planned. And the people who were responsible were not only not relieved of duty (to say nothing of tried, convicted, and jailed), but were put in charge of the “reform”. It was the economic crime of the century (so far, at least), and its very enormity has, I believe, blinded people to the truth. Sure, a few members of the elite took a few token hits, but in the long run they'll come out of it not only intact, but much better off. Most of them already are better off. As usual, it was the middle class that got bamboozled, and make no mistake, they're being set up again even as we speak, because they still, even after all of this, still have too doggone much money.
But here's what I find fascinating (the preceding being old news at best) – the commission was not unanimous in its conclusions. While the “Democratic majority” signed onto the “blame everybody” model (which is what one would expect, given their tendency to blame “society” for every human ill -- at least for the ones that they can't blame on Sarah Palin or Rush Limbaugh), the Republican minority blamed the crisis on “government intervention in the housing market, including the support given to mortgage buyers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac”. Well, fair enough, those factors were certainly in play. But the government interventions were based on orders from the Regime, as were the actions of FM and FM. They were certainly guilty, but they had also been set up, which is to say that someone had to take the rap... someone had to be identified as “Patient #1”, and why not the housing market and its mishandlers in Washington? But if you're trying to tell me that the entire edifice -- world-wide! -- toppled because of American sub-prime mortgages, I'll ask you for some of what you're smoking. I just don't think it's possible, and I don't think anyone else really does either. I think FM and FM have been told that they're going to take a hit for the team, and objections will not be entertained. (And you'll notice that no one speaking for FM and FM has said a word all this time; they have been totally silent on the matter – again, as ordered.)
But wait! We're not quite finished yet with minority opinions. Some other Republicans said “the crisis was the unavoidable result of global economic forces”. Well... this is actually closest to the truth, but not for the reasons they think. “Global economic forces” sounds like some sort of blind force of nature, like a hurricane or earthquake. It also makes the U.S. look, or sound, like a passive victim... which is, again, true – but not for the reasons one might think. After all, even “global economic forces” have to start somewhere. There are key points at which initiatives are taken, and key choke points. There are laws, regulations, procedures, and customs -- not to mention a secret infrastructure. And the concept somehow creates a picture of banks, businesses, and national economies all being driven around in a gigantic whirlwind, with no one in charge and everything out of control. My view of the matter, as I've explained any number of times, is quite different. I believe that things were, and are, very much under control – just not by us. That is, not by the American people or their representatives, or by anyone who has the American people's (or any other people's) interests at heart. The global economy is being run, in short, by, and for the benefit of, the ruling elite, and they suffer no distraction from nationalism or loyalty to any form of government or style of economy. If it's good for them and for their interests, it's good, period. And this is more or less what one would expect. People in charge, at any level, will naturally tend to look after their own interests first, and if anything happens to trickle down to others, well OK – but that's not the priority. And I believe, futher, that any form of government, including democracies, will gradually "morph" in that direction -- i.e. of increasingly-centralized control by an elite. And likewise, we can expect any collection of similar governments and economies to collectively morph in that direction -- hence the EU, for example.
So when the crisis is called “the unavoidable result of global economic forces”, it's true that it was unavoidable, by anyone who had the economic welfare of Americans in mind, because anyone like that would not be in a position of sufficient power to do anything about it. And it was “global” for certain, since (I suspect) many, if not most, of the shots are being called in Europe, or by a cartel made up of Europe and North America. But the “forces” involved are not blind, or accidental, or random – they are conscious and purposeful, and their plans typically work out quite nicely (for them). All of these other alleged culprits are tentacles of the larger squid – or cogs in the machinery. And as for blaming the poor saps who signed up for “adjustable-rate” and “no money down” mortgages... well, they're about as much to blame as compulsive gamblers or heavy drinkers or drug users. Yes, they made unfortunate choices, but if the “pushers” hadn't been standing right there singing their siren songs, those choices would not have been available. Doesn't anyone remember how exciting all those new, “creative” ways of financing home ownership were, back when they were riding high? It reminded me of nothing so much as what happened when news of the latest “killer weed” spread through the hippie community; no one could wait to get their hands on some, at any price. I mean – people are foolish and subject to temptation, let's face it. But to blame them instead of the pushers – well, that's just scam piled on scam.