Monday :: Jun 25, 2007

The Predator Regime

by soccerdad

A couple of old articles which I read for the first time today was very interesting and a nice summary of where we are and some of the factors that got us here. Many of the themes are not new or surprising to a cynic like me but there are still some interesting points. The first is brought to our attention by Max Sawicky. Its an article by the young Galbraith published in Mother Jones in May 2006. Here’s the main point:

Today, the signature of modern American capitalism is neither benign competition, nor class struggle, nor an inclusive middle-class utopia. Instead, predation has become the dominant feature—a system wherein the rich have come to feast on decaying systems built for the middle class. The predatory class is not the whole of the wealthy; it may be opposed by many others of similar wealth. But it is the defining feature, the leading force. And its agents are in full control of the government under which we live.

It’s a perfect description. For such a regime Galbraith maintains that nothing is done for the public good. They have friends, enemies, and prey; the latter being most of us.

The predator-prey model explains some things that other models cannot: in particular, cycles of prosperity and depression. Growth among the prey stimulates predation. The two populations grow together at first, but when the balance of power shifts toward the predators (through rising interest rates, utility rates, oil prices, or embezzlement), both can crash abruptly. When they do, it takes a long time for either to recover.

Its this later point why many of the elites have come to hate Bush, they don’t like the long cyle for recovery. And there is also this:
In a world where the winners are all connected, it’s not only the prey who lose out. It’s everyone who hasn’t licked the appropriate boots. Predatory regimes are like protection rackets: powerful and feared, but neither loved nor respected. They do not enjoy a broad political base.

Galbraith makes a very interesting point and should be considered by all those who keep screaming “they(Bush) are incompetent”. He makes the claim that the Bush administration will not deal with events like Katrina and Iraq because they are wilfully indiffernt to competence. The only things that matter is how much loot have they plundered. Galbraith refers briefly to the history of the Bush clan that contributes to ths predatory behavior.

But not to worry, Chris Floyd just republished an article he originally wrote shortly after the 2004 election.

But all the earnest disquisitions about Bush's "ideology" entirely miss the point -- and increase the fog that the Regime deliberately spreads over its true interests. For the heart of this slouching beast is neither left-wing nor right-wing; it's strictly Bush-wing. Anyone even slightly acquainted with the history of the Bush dynasty knows what makes these preppy puppies run -- and it has nothing to do with conservative principles or moral values or national security or world freedom. It's not ideology, but investments -- the gobbling up of unearned, risk-free lucre on the grandest scale imaginable.

Naturally, the pursuit of this kind of piratical wealth leads to certain kinds of policies that can at times be mistaken for a political philosophy……….
Taken together, these traits present a formidable picture of a thoroughgoing ideological juggernaut, well-plated with philosophical, academic, legal and theological armor. But underneath all this bristling array there is nothing but a tiny white maggot of greed, wriggling and gorging on scraps of rotting meat.

Bush as a maggot, I like the metaphor. Floyd also touches on the Bush family history which demonstartes that these guys are simply out for themselves and a couple of friends.

soccerdad :: 6:14 PM :: Comments (15) :: Digg It!