Written By: - Date published: 12:08 pm, August 8th, 2016 - 72 comments
Categories: capital gains, capitalism, class war, climate change, cost of living, debt / deficit, Economy, energy, Environment, Financial markets, poverty, socialism, sustainability - Tags:
Power and privilege in the modern capitalist society is primarily dictated by your access to, and ability to generate a return on, financial capital.
In the present delusional economic system, amassing significant liquid, financial capital gives you serious options in life. It gives you authority and security. It allows you to get big things done, by other people, in very little time, at your discretion. It provides you with the freedom and the time to live where you want, how you want and to do the things you want, when you want.
It gives you access to people in authority, the best in professional advisors, and institutions which make the serious decisions.
It smooths out every day in every way.
At least, this is the promise and the aspiration in the minds of the still mostly poor 1%’ers (because only the 1% of the 1% are any where near wealthy enough to live as described. Even the law partner on $350,000 p.a. has to turn up to work Mon to Fri, work occasional nights, put up with irrational neurotic narcissistic clients and pay off a massive mortgage).
Compared to the power of financial capital, the power of human capital in this economic system has been consistently marginalised and deprecated. Human capital which is not in the service of financial capital doubly so (think of how the most valued courses in universities today are the ones in the service of corporations and financial capital: e.g. marketing, finance, banking, business administration, public relations, etc. all of which primarily teach skills and attitudes useful in destroying the future of the planet).
And let’s not even discuss how invisibly the value of ecological, environmental and social capital is ranked in this self-destructive economic system.
For any chance of civilisational survival, financial capital has to be stripped of its vastly OP (overpowered) status. This might include removing profitability from the fossil fuel industry (free but declining petrol anyone?), eliminating capital gains from housing and land, applying a sharp Financial Transactions Tax, crippling all forms of uneconomic growth, implementing serious real democracy, and defanging the rabidly consumer culture we now take for granted.
And on the other side of the ledger, taking irresistable action to enhance the human, social and environmental capital in our society.
Our dire need for political economic alternatives is now at a fever pitch.
Our mad chase for keyboard created electronic dollars is sending this civilisation, not to mention individuals and communities, over the cliff.