Wall Street, Corporatists, Neoliberals And Plutocrats
There is strong overlap of goals between big wealth and libertarians. These fellow travelers often fund libertarians and their organizations to promote overlapping goals. This is a class war: between the first-class citizens (large corporations and the very rich) and ordinary people.
- Plutocracy (49 links)
- Most of the world, including the USA, is a plutocracy: ruled by and for the rich, the .01%. Libertarians with their obsession with property tend to favor this status quo. Also known as plutonomy and plutarchy, closely related to oligarchy.
- ALEC (7 links)
- The American Legislative Exchange Council, founded, led, and funded in part by the Koch brothers, is leading the class war by corporatists and plutocrats to disenfranchise ordinary people. ALEC opposes unions, voting rights, regulation, environmental law and other democratic countervailing power. ALEC relies on corrupt direct access to legislators, handing them already-written bills.
- Also, Your Record Sucks [More...]
- "The reason no one takes most libertarians seriously is because they keep voting for people who do a great job securing economic “liberty,” [...] but they do a horrible job reversing any of the negative civil liberties trends."
- Charles and David Koch (37 links)
- Libertarian billionaires who have founded and funded a vast array of libertarian and conservative organizations aimed at Obstructing Regulation And Regulatory Capture. Go to Kochtopus.
- Conservative Intellectuals: Follow the Money [More...]
- Libertarians are conservatives in terms of property, distinguished only by dislike of government. Their ideas, funded by plutocrats, are wrong because "because being wrong in the right way has always been a financially secure activity."
- Cyberlibertarianism: The Extremist Foundations of ‘Digital Freedom’ [More...]
- An analysis of the ideology of cyberlibertarianism, placing it within the neoliberal thought collective along with classical liberalism, neoliberalism, and libertarianism. A must read!
- Cyberlibertarians’ Digital Deletion of the Left [More...]
- "We put faith in a technocratic progressivism that does not clearly emerge from leftist foundations and that, without close and careful work, is unlikely to support those foundations. Most worryingly, we put aside active efforts to solve social problems and advance leftist perspectives by giving in to a technological form of magical thinking that is the opposite of engaged political action."
- Democalypse 2014 - South by South Mess: Ad of Brothers [More...]
- The Daily Show with John Stewart satirizes a Koch Industries greenwashing advertisement. Accurate and hysterically funny.
- Dismantling Public Education: Turning Ideology into Gold [More...]
- "Nowhere is the toxic effect of privatization on America’s public wellbeing more evident than in the sphere of education." How, through lengthy propaganda, public education is being transformed into a cash cow for the wealthy.
- Globalization, Free Trade and Economic Freedom (30 links)
- Code for "let business run the world: the heck with the populace." The anti-liberal dominance of plutocratic property and business over popular sovereignty. Historically, we could extend these concepts to include buying, owning, and selling slaves. The arguments made then were the same. Used by propagandists to trump other freedoms. Also known as economic liberty.
- Greed Is Good (2 links)
- Libertarians like to think their greed is good, but think labor unionists are greedy and thus bad. Greed is different than desire for wealth: it is desire for wealth without enough regard for whether others are harmed.
- How the Wall Street Journal Misleads About Federal Jobs [More...]
- "The editorial board of Rupert Murdoch's Wall Street Journal has a simple game. They want to cut taxes for the rich and government services for the rest, and end regulations of banks and the environment. They support taxpayer-financed bailouts of Wall Street when needed. They will twist any facts in the service of these goals."
- I am a job creator: A manifesto for the entitled [More...]
- A fine mocking of the double standards of various rich people.
- Libertarian Indexes Of Freedom (7 links)
- Over the years, many libertarian think-tanks and other Koch-funded organizations have created indexes of freedom that invariably represent the interests of large multinational corporations and the rich while ignoring the interests of ordinary people. This is obviously opposed to democratic ideas of political freedom. The entries in this index are evidence, not criticism.
- Mass Immigration is the Last Fraud of Neoliberalism [More...]
- Quotes Dean Baker's "The Conservative Nanny State" to point out that mass immigration has also been an important Neoliberal tool to depress the wages of a substantial segment of the workforce.
- Masters of the Universe: Hayek, Friedman, and the Birth of Neoliberal Politics (book)
- "Based on archival research and interviews with leading participants in the movement, Masters of the Universe traces the ascendancy of neoliberalism from the academy of interwar Europe to supremacy under Reagan and Thatcher and in the decades since."
- Microfinance (3 links)
- A failed "free market" solution to poverty that libertarians and neoliberals trumpeted as better than government efforts. Also known as Microcredit.
- Mr. Anonymous and the Not-So-Spontaneous Birth of the Libertarian Movement [More...]
- William Volker, alias "Mr. Anonymous", was one of the first major plutocratic funders of what has developed into libertarianism. Tens of billions of dollars have been spent on this centrally planned propaganda blitz over 60+ years.
- Neoliberal slavery and the imperial connection [More...]
- "We are experiencing now a radicalization of human degradation in unexpected proportions to the point that slavery has come back to support economic growth and wealth accumulation, even though slavery is forbidden almost everywhere, reality is that in today’s world the economy is fed by slave work."
- Neoliberalism and the End of Liberal Democracy [More...]
- Neoliberalism described: "[W]hat is crucial is that the liberalism in what has come to be called neoliberalism refers to liberalism’s economic variant, recuperating selected pre-Keynesian assumptions about the generation of wealth and its distribution, rather than to liberalism as a political doctrine, as a set of political institutions, or as political practices."
- Neoliberalism, the ideology at the root of all our problems [More...]
- George Monbiot points out that a large number of current ills are due to neoliberal policies. "Financial meltdown, environmental disaster and even the rise of Donald Trump -- neoliberalism has played its part in them all."
- Rand Paul’s terrifying vision for America: The truth about his plan for “Economic Freedom Zones” [More...]
- "The neoliberal experiment in hyper-capitalism and the erosion of the state, which used to be run in places like Chile, after Washington helped install a dictator, has now come home. The vision outlined in Paul’s bill is nothing less than an upending of the American ideal–a republic of citizens–and the creation of a republic of property, with the state receding into inconsequentiality."
- Ron Paul Wants to Abolish the CIA; His Largest Donor Builds Toys for It [More...]
- Billionaire Peter Thiel, who has contributed millions to Ron Paul's Super Pac, describes himself as an opponent of democracy. He is a seriously creepy right-wing nutjob.
- Study Confirms Tea Party Was Created by Big Tobacco and Billionaires [More...]
- "A new academic study confirms that front groups with longstanding ties to the tobacco industry and the billionaire Koch brothers planned the formation of the Tea Party movement more than a decade before it exploded onto the U.S. political scene."
- The Free-Market Al-Qaeda: Neoliberal Think Tanks and the Harm They Do [More...]
- How a a small group of “free-market” ideologues consciously set out 40 years ago to marketize everything public. Includes a list of 12 right-wing philanthropic foundations that set out in the 1960’s to overturn a century’s accumulation of progressive public policy.
- The God That Sucked [More...]
- The results of roughly 30 years of market worship are a destruction of the American dream.
- The Origins of Neoliberalism (3 links)
- A three part series by Philip Pilkington which attributes the rise of neoliberalism to Friedrich Hayek, drawing heavily on The Road To Mount Pelerin. How Hayek changed from an economist to a successful propagandist.
- The Questionable Record of Neoliberalism [More...]
- "I’ll take a brief look at [...] the US & UK, Chile, Hong Kong & Singapore, and Scandinavia. I believe that in none of these instances do we get a clear example of neoliberal policies succeeding economically."
- The Tyranny of the Market [More...]
- Angus Sibley's outline of the threats from libertarian (free-market) economics. "According to free-market dogma, we must accept passively the dictatorship of the market."
- When Congress Busted Milton Friedman (And Libertarianism Was Created By Big Business Business Lobbyists) [More...]
- Milton Friedman wrote propaganda for the Foundation for Economic Education, considered the first libertarian think-tank. "That is how libertarianism started: As an arm of big business lobbying."
- Wingnut Welfare (3 links)
- Plutocratic funders funnel vast amounts of money for political purposes through myriads of shell companies. They evade campaign finance regulation and mislead the IRS about the purpose to get unjustified charitable tax deductions and conceal the origin of the money. The ironic thing is that spreading market ideology is not profitable, and must be subsidized by the wealthy.
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[A blind spot]... a simply weird refusal to acknowledge the huge role played by money and monetary incentives promoting bad ideas.
Paul Krugman, "Conservative Intellectuals: Follow the Money"
Thus despite, for example, the dogmatic insistence on “spontaneous order” as the exclusive result of market-based transactions -- transactions that in core neoliberal dogma are said to be the only permissible form of social planning -- the social policies pursued by the MPS [Mont Pelerin Society] and its outer shells [libertarianism, classical liberalism, etc.] are often exquisitely planned, anything but spontaneous, and have nothing to do with any market.
David Golumbia, "Cyberlibertarianism: The Extremist Foundations of ‘Digital Freedom’"
Neoliberals in the innermost shell (like the Koch brothers) use libertarians at farther removes (like the Tea Party) not always to realize their agenda directly, but to push political discourse to the hard right.
David Golumbia, "Cyberlibertarians’ Digital Deletion of the Left"
Over the past two and a half decades, the poor in privatized urban schools have been successfully harnessed to the delivery of reliable profits to investors and munificent salaries to executives.
Alex Molnar, "Dismantling Public Education: Turning Ideology into Gold"
[...] the advantages of bigness have outweighed the disadvantages, and companies have been led, "as if by an invisible hand" to get big and take over.
Michael Goodwin, "Economix: How Our Economy Works (and Doesn't Work), in Words and Pictures"
People who dismiss the unemployed and dependent as ‘parasites’ fail to understand economics and parasitism. A successful parasite is one that is not recognized by its host, one that can make its host work for it without appearing as a burden. Such is the ruling class in a capitalist society.
Jason Read, "How a USM professor became an Internet meme"
The invisible hand of the market makes a very good pickpocket.
Tens, perhaps hundreds of billions of dollars, hundreds of millions of books, hundreds of journals, dozens of universities, tens of thousands of people and thousands of professorships, and so on in a network touching virtually everyone in the "Western Democracies" -- all of it centrally planned, all of it subsidized, none of it capable of existing by itself in the commercial marketplace or in the "marketplace of ideas" and all of it failing dozens of times until hooked into the river of cash produced by the simple subsidies of the rich designed to derail the "free" evolution of ideas as they were actually proceeding... is there any such example in all of human history of a "movement" so far at odds with its own self-proclaimed "principles"?
Anaxarchos (pseudonym), "Mr. Anonymous and the Not-So-Spontaneous Birth of the Libertarian Movement"
Freedom from trade unions and collective bargaining means the freedom to suppress wages. Freedom from regulation means the freedom to poison rivers, endanger workers, charge iniquitous rates of interest and design exotic financial instruments. Freedom from tax means freedom from the distribution of wealth that lifts people out of poverty.
George Monbiot, "Neoliberalism, the ideology at the root of all our problems"
What has been created by this half century of massive corporate propaganda is what's called "anti-politics". So that anything that goes wrong, you blame the government. Well okay, there's plenty to blame the government about, but the government is the one institution that people can change... the one institution that you can affect without institutional change. That's exactly why all the anger and fear has been directed at the government. The government has a defect - it's potentially democratic. Corporations have no defect - they're pure tyrannies. So therefore you want to keep corporations invisible, and focus all anger on the government. So if you don't like something, you know, your wages are going down, you blame the government. Not blame the guys in the Fortune 500, because you don't read the Fortune 500. You just read what they tell you in the newspapers... so you don't read about the dazzling profits and the stupendous dizz, and the wages going down and so on, all you know is that the bad government is doing something, so let's get mad at the government.
You might say that neoliberalism borrows from economics only in the sense that astrology borrows from astronomy.
Simon Wren-Lewis, "Ordoliberalism, Neoliberalism and Economics"
All Power to the Markets has never been too persuasive as a rallying cry.
Thomas Frank, "The God That Sucked"
The market is a god that sucks. Yes, it cashed a few out at the tippy top, piled up the loot of the world at their feet, delivered shiny Lexuses into the driveways of their ten-bedroom suburban chateaux. But for the rest of us, the very principles that make the market the object of D’Souza’s worship, of Gilder’s awestruck piety, are the forces that conspire to make life shitty in a million ways great and small. The market is the reason our housing is so expensive. It is the reason our public transportation is lousy. It is the reason our cities sprawl idiotically all across the map. It is the reason our word processing programs stink and our prescription drugs cost more than anywhere else. In order that a fortunate few might enjoy a kind of prosperity unequaled in human history, the rest of us have had to abandon ourselves to a lifetime of casual employment, to unquestioning obedience within an ever more arbitrary and despotic corporate regime, to medical care available on a maybe/maybe-not basis, to a housing market interested in catering only to the fortunate.
Thomas Frank, "The God That Sucked"
For all this vast and sparkling intellectual production, though, we hear surprisingly little about what it’s like to be managed. Perhaps the reason for this is because, when viewed from below, all the glittering, dazzling theories of management seem to come down to the same ugly thing. This is the lesson that Barbara Ehrenreich learns from the series of low-wage jobs that she works and then describes in all their bitter detail in her new book, Nickel and Dimed. Pious chatter about “free agents” and “empowered workers” may illuminate the covers of Fast Company and Business 2.0, but what strikes one most forcefully about the world of waitresses, maids, and Wal-Mart workers that Ehrenreich enters is the overwhelming power of management, the intimidating array of advantages it holds in its endless war on wages. This is a place where even jobs like housecleaning have been Taylorized to extract maximum output from workers (“You know, all this was figured out with a stopwatch,” Ehrenreich is told by a proud manager at a maid service), where omnipresent personality and drug tests screen out those of assertive nature, where even the lowliest of employees are overseen by professional-grade hierarchs who crack the whip without remorse or relent, where workers are cautioned against “stealing time” from their employer by thinking about anything other than their immediate task, and where every bit of legal, moral, psychological, and anthropological guile available to advanced civilization is deployed to prevent the problem of pay from ever impeding the upward curve of profitability. This is the real story of life under markets.
Thomas Frank, "The God That Sucked"
As with much libertarian posturing what they say and how they act are two different things. The libertarians are owned (whether they know it or not) by a group of super wealthy capitalists (Scaife, Koch, Walton, Coors, Mars, etc.). They get their ideologically motivated followers to spew things about "free" markets and maximizing profits, but all this is a cover for their true agenda -- making them even richer.
Robert Feinman, commenting in "What obligation? Maximise what?"