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Forum Post: For those who hate Capitalism

Posted 10 years ago on Sept. 15, 2012, 4:44 p.m. EST by Carroll (40)
This content is user submitted and not an official statement

Capitalism--so many flavors to chose from.

There's State Capitalism of the Soviet Union, idiotic central planning propped up by a totalitarian party.

Or the Corporate Capitalism of Italy and Germany between the wars that bred insanity to the march of machinery.

Or Il Duce's little cousin in the USA, lacking only the cult of The Leader and an urgent call for National Unity, but with the necessary legislation in place with the Homeland Security and Patriot Acts in hand.

Wait, Free Market Capitalism waves its flag above its statue of liberty reminding us there is no better theoretical option this side of tribalism to solve economic problems--never mind the soul-numbing properties inherent in its invasion of all space and time.

Of course Worker Capitalism (Communism) has yet to be tried other than for a few months at a time.

Apart from the 1,000 blends and mixes, does that cover the field?

No, this list omits the most efficient capital market of all, the most prosperous and secure example of capitalism in the world today: the American political system or Political Capitalism. From day one in this country politics has been mediated by a capital market. Voters buy as much influence as they can afford--appropriate for a country set up to harbor a capitalist economy. In the old days, the average of the prosperous business interests bought government that looked after the concerns of the middle class who did, after all, throw over the king for not doing it himself. By providing a business-friendly environment government ensured the economic stability that kept the support and the campaign funding coming.

Then the limited-liability laws the 19th. Century created the modern corporation with a concentration of wealth so great as to tilt the cart. The capital market of politics was inundated with such wealth that the demands of the deep pockets buried the voice of the average citizen. For the last 150 years the invisible hand has been self-correcting within this latest and greatest version of Political Capitalism. Congress barters legislative bias for tenure in office, as it always has. But now the legislative bias no longer serves the middle class and cannot even provide economic stability for anyone. In our little capitalist country, democracy should mean economic opportunity for all, purchased at the ballot box. But rather, the vote has become an ornament and we have economic opportunity only for the deep pockets, the average of which no longer equates to the commonwealth. The advertising jingle "What's good for General Motors is good for the USA" has shown its lie.

If we want to set the matter right we have to find a way to become players again in the political system, that is, to force Congress to reckon with a countervailing power that challenges the deep pockets. We can not do that by 'taking money out of politics' because our system works in no other way. Besides we already tried to do that and the money runs right back in faster than a dog can lick itself. We have to balance the money influence.

The pile of money large enough to counter deep pockets is right there in front of us. But we meekly refuse to see it or seize it and point it at Congress. Call it People's Capitalism. Or leave that awful term out if you wish--just give the people some power to control their destinies.

The pile of money? The money in The US Treasury--it belongs to the people anyway if you listen to the politicians who refer to it as the 'taxpayers' money'. The current owners? Congress gets to spend it and the use of an object establishes ownership. The Treasury funds are, in fact, the working capital that Congress uses to dicker with the deep pockets who dicker back with their contributions and demand laws to let them grow even wealthier.

How to transfer ownership to the people? Let Congress pass a law giving financial ownership to the taxpayers pro-rated to their paid-in taxes (Stock Certificates for INDIVIDUAL taxpayers only--the object is to re-balance the system toward democratic rule). Let the owners redeem their Shares anytime there is a surplus in The Treasury (2001 comes to mind). The collective weight of all voting taxpayers who can gain ONLY by efficient government that solves all of society's problems will create an 800 lb. gorilla looking over Congress's shoulder as they sit to bargain with deep pockets. All the contributions in the world will not carry the day at the next election if everyone is losing money on its Share in government ownership. Next time they'll think twice before they cheat.

And when Congress refuses to cede ownership to the people? To the streets, all 100%, to Occupy The Treasury.



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[-] 3 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 10 years ago

Occupy the Banks/Fed/Treasury

[-] 2 points by Carroll (40) 10 years ago

Right on. If we owned the political system again, we would be occupying the banks--at least the legislation that governs them since what the banks do will influence the value of our Shares of ownership over the USA. Can we be honest here? In an age in which money dominates the political system, the vote is no longer adequate by itself to represent the democratic interests. It's time we arm the people with some deep pockets of their own. Look at 'people-ownership' of a huge chunk of capital as an extension of the vote--a mechanism that is parallel and complementary to voting.

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 10 years ago

The corporations spend a lot of money on lobbying. But even more importantly, they spend a lot of TIME being involved.

About 1% of our population is politically active. The rest spend an hour every four years.

That is a losing equation.

We cannot compete with the money. But we can compete with time. And we have them beat by a long shot with shear numbers.

It just takes ambition.

[-] 1 points by Carroll (40) 10 years ago

With The Treasury in our pockets, we could outgun them at the money trough.

[-] 1 points by yobstreet (-575) 10 years ago

What is an attorney? He's someone who attaches a monetary value to everything and then preys on that capital. What are Congressman? Well in many cases they are attorneys; why are they there?

We've had Congress in court before; in fact, evidence was overwhelming and each and every one of them was pronounced guilty; yet they remain.

So I think... I'll have another cup of coffee and get some fresh air.

[-] 1 points by Carroll (40) 10 years ago

No need to run their asses back into the swamp of jurisprudence. Grab the money bag from their legal little hands and make them serve as managers, not owners.

[-] 1 points by bensdad (8977) 10 years ago

Virtually every OWS goal –
jobs, taxes, government honesty, energy, environment, economy
all go back to EXACTY one place
And there is EXACTLY one first step:


A constitutional amendment to
Overturn Citizens United and Corporate Personhood


For a complete analysis of the amendment issue,

and the text of all amendments,
and our comparison of all of the amendments,
and the Citizens United case transcript,
and the Citizens United decision,
and the Buckley decision,
and analysis of corporate personhood,
and analysis of Article III,
and the ABC News poll on CU / CP,
and the PFAW poll on CU / CP,
and 70+ videos on CU / CP from

Chomsky, Hedges, Witchcraft, Reich,
Warren, Lessig, Hartmann, Maher, Sanders, Hightower, etc.

and our voting bloc petition & plan.

no password or signup

JOIN our OWS Working Group:

Wednesdays 5:30-7:30PM @ 60 Wall St – The Atrium

[-] 1 points by hchc (3297) from Tampa, FL 10 years ago

After that, make sure you dont vote for candidates that take corporate money.

Otherwise its like signing a no sugar pledge, and then gorging yourself on Snickers bars.

[-] 1 points by Carroll (40) 10 years ago

Corporate personhood is a nebulous concept with as much definition outside of legal reality as in it. It's a loaded term and does make the skin crawl in disgust. Running it back a few hundred years, it is a term that refers to the right of a group of people to act in one accord without facing so much red tape that nothing can be done. As such it is not so grotesque. Let's say OWS wants to hold a rally and needs a permit from the city. [I have NO idea how OWS negotiates the city's red tape and use it only as a hypothetical example that is close to home]. Is it practical for every OWS member to have to show up three days before and sign something? Or is it better to allow some OWS representative or some other sympathetic corporation such a trade union to go down to wherever and sign on behalf of the organization. There may be beneficial aspects of this provocative term. I DO want to have the right to sue corporations same as person should they screw up. That's a part of their personhood. Understand that I may want to consider the complexity of the situation without foregoing any of the hatred I feel for corporations in general.

And I am offering you a chance to elaborate, assuming you were not just spamming my post, pasting your poster on every available pole. I followed your links, but did not find the answers I need. Specifically, I would like to know how we can take money out of politics when that is the very basis of our electoral system: a nation founded to harbor capitalism, using a capital market as the mediator of the political process, depending on people to vote with their money to secure the government they need. If we destroy our political system then we will need the heavens to part and tell us how vote. Can you imagine the kaleidoscope of hallucination on that day?

Also, we have tried to 'take money out of politics' in the past just to find human nature and ingenuity is a multi-splendored sieve. We might as well try to legislate morality. Which leaves me to wonder why we don't just level the playing field and let the broad democratic base have a weapon bigger than the corporations', to hold to Congress's head.

[-] 2 points by JesseHeffran (3903) 10 years ago

I enjoy the fact that I have a political remedy to human nature and protest the fact that I can not afford a legal remedy.

Although government may be useless in times of prosperity, they have been proven to work for individuals without a lot of money as well as the legal remedy serves those of means.

I mean; I do see the futility of probably ever overcoming human nature, but what makes you believe the legal remedy wont be just as corrupted once the political one is defunded?

[-] 2 points by Carroll (40) 10 years ago

I'm sure not which legal remedy you refer to (corp. personhood or people ownership of the nation's wealth). But in either case it is a point well taken. Is it a coincidence that most of the world teeters on the brink of cynicism? Time to pull out the existentialists and take the leap of faith--it's always so. Where is the faith we can stroll over?

Look at the lousy job democracy did in solving the slavery issue or the economic segregation of the South. Yet I would take a gimpy democracy over totalitarianism, and full-blown corporate capitalism is around the corner.

If you mean why trust empowering the people with ownership of The Treasury, I like the odds there because it relies on the invisible force of people (in the aggregate) seeking their personal gain to chart the national course--in the way free-market capitalism, if it existed, will put buggy-whip makers out of work once the automobile arrives and find new endeavors for the unemployed. The longer the people-ownership is in place, the sharper its edge. It uses the principles of capitalism to judo its abuses. It offers an objective measure of government performance--either the money is there or it isn't. Share values either rise or fall. Of course we will have to make the crime of waffling with the government's books a capital offense.

[-] 1 points by Johnw (44) 10 years ago

Are you suggesting that we turn the US Govt into a corporation? Blasphemy!

[-] 1 points by Carroll (40) 10 years ago

No, I'm saying government already is a for-profit business. Capital is paid in; profit is taken out. Congress has assumed ownership of our paid-in-capital and its members are reaping the dividends by spending it for their purposes. The rightful owners of the business of government are the people. Give us the financial ownership and we can begin seeing the Congress as the managers of our money, not its owners.