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Sunday, January 27, 2008
Living in the Abattoir
I read an article this morning in the ideas section of the Boston Globe that was all about how the Federal Reserve and congress are in no position to be able to get a grip on the financial crisis that's shaking up Wall Street at the moment because the complexity of these new innovations in financing are so complicated that nobody understands them. The investments are all being funneled through conduits like the CDO's that have gone so bad recently so that the banks don't actually have to have the capital in reserve to cover their bets if the whole thing goes sour. There's this whole shadow economy that's all about shifting debts and a bunch of hooha. It's basically a gigantic and really complicated shell game, but the outcome may be the same. We all lose out if the whole thing collapses. While I advocate thinking outside the capitalist box and looking at better less greed-based ways of social organizing, if our financial markets collapse it'll be the kind of disaster that ends with wars and killings and all that nonsense. While it is highly clear to me at least that we need to change the structure of society if we want to move past the problems of the last millenium, it'll have to be a gradual, non-violent kind of, oh okay yeah I take yr point move, over and against a raging violent revolution, but if we're not careful we may get the revolution without any solid alternative to the current system. That's just as sketchy. Okay, I've probably gone a little out to the rim on that rant, but the basic point is solid. We should really think about what it is we're doing here. Capitalism is in the end unsustainable. The system calls for continued and unrestrained growth. Planet Earth is not equiped for that kind of move. We should really be looking for how to bring the system of social organization into some kind of stasis, not just groping for more material shit for ourselves and our kin. I mean, come on, right? That's a pretty shallow approach don't you think? We can go deeper.