Saturday, February 7, 2009

Looters, Strikers, and Economic Systems

The strikers will be only those with ethics because they are the ones with the most to lose. They are at the top of the economic food chain.

In an op-ed in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Robert P. Murphy, Ph.D., PRI senior fellow in Business and Economic Studies, argues [in a report] that vast government spending is not a cure for the U.S. recession. Dr. Murphy explains that the true purpose of an economic system isn’t to “create jobs” or channel a particular number of green pieces of paper into everyone’s wallet on payday, but that workers are employed productively, so that they take scarce resources and transform them into goods and services that consumers value.

“The price of limiting economic freedom is real, but not always apparent or easily understood by [ ] by lawmakers,” said Lawrence J. McQuillan, Ph.D., co-author of the report and director of Business and Economic Studies at PRI." PRI

It is not easily understood by business itself, apparently. After taking government money that essentially made government an invested stockholder, the bonus-paying, romper-room, jet-buying antics of those businesses have forced government to cap the pay of future recipients.

"Many of us who know [Ayn] Rand's work," wrote Stephen Moore in an op-ed, "have noticed that with each passing week, and with each successive bailout plan and economic-stimulus scheme out of Washington, our current politicians are committing the very acts of economic lunacy that Atlas Shrugged parodied in 1957, when this 1,000+ page novel was first published and became an instant hit." [emphasis added]

"For the uninitiated," Moore continues, "the moral of the story is simply this: Politicians invariably respond to crises -- that in most cases they themselves created -- by spawning new government programs, laws and regulations. These, in turn, generate more havoc and poverty, which inspires the politicians to create more programs . . . and the downward spiral repeats itself until the productive sectors of the economy collapse under the collective weight of taxes and other burdens imposed in the name of fairness, equality and do-goodism."

Not only did the politicians, using the code phrases "for the public good," "the redistribution of wealth," and others, create a downward spiral, the very spiral we are on now, but they created two new classes of Americans: the looters and the strikers.

The looters were those who, like the corporations who are now taking government money, took government money. Looters were also people as individuals who fed off this constant stream of government handouts to the needy. The government itself was the prime looter, because it took from those who produced the wealth in order to give to those who sucked the life out the productive workers.

The strikers were those who refused to play the game any longer. At first they were only the top executives of major companies, and only those who had ethics. Those who had no ethics, like the bank execs we have now who take multi-million dollar bonuses after wrecking their companys, had no reason to go on strike. If they played the game right, they would still eventually get their money.

In Atlas Shrugged, the main visable protaganist is a woman who runs the nation's major railroad, at a time in our history when railroads played a much larger role in the economy. The train could be said to be a metaphor for what happens in the plot, because the looters' train is out of control running downhill with no breaks.

The strikers are only those with ethics because they are the ones with the most to lose. The are at the top of the economic food chain. Everyone below them feeds off them. When they begin to strike, disappearing apparently from the face of the earth, untraceable, unreachable, then the execs without ethics are stuck at the top of the economic food chain.

No one has yet become a striker that I know of. But its going to happen. It happened in the great "Brain Drain"* from England in the 1960's, when the brains moved to freer nations. "The term was coined by the Royal Society to describe the emigration of "scientists and technologists" to North America from post-war Europe." [* see [1] [2] [3]]

But in Atlas Shrugged, some of the "brains" the keep the economy afloat are literally invited to strike, and are given a safe haven. Some, who don't know of this safe haven, strike on their own by retiring without explanation.

The moral of this blog is to point out that what is about to happen to this country and to the world, as long and as far as this bail-out is continued, will cause everything in the novel to come to fruition.

The only means of rescuing the world from the abomination of spending-stimulus packages, especially those filled with "social" programs, is to take the advice of the 200+ economists who disagree with President Obama and with the force behind the strike in the novel: "Get Out Of Our Way!"

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