Money- The Ultimate WMD
We have heard many references to WMD in recent years. Initially, we used the term to speak of nuclear weapons. Chemical weapons were added to our list. While they are clearly not quite as devastating as nuclear weapons, they are still sufficiently dangerous to qualify as included in the category. The basis for this classification obviously would be the large-scale effect on a population. Now consider the whole new class of threats encompassed by cyber-attacks. Imagine the havoc that would be caused by corruption of our banking and finance systems. Imagine your banking accounts compromised, or drained, credit cards rendered useless, ownership evidence of registered assets like cars and houses destroyed and those assets placed in jeopardy. What if attacks such as these could be routinely accomplished without victims’ knowledge?
What if a substance existed that could allow an evil conspiracy to “brainwash” the governing bodies to follow there instructions as if just zombies with pre-programmed agendas.
Now consider the effect of money. It does all these things with impunity because the population has become conditioned to such a system. The attacks are considered just part of life, not an outside force at all.
Lets go down the list of “effects”. Chemical weapons affect large populations poisoning everything it contacts. Imagine a foreign power poisoning the water system of a community and people dying after drinking their water. Who would not consider this a major attack? What if the poison worked slowly? Such poisoning of water and air is taking place at an increasing rate and money assures that no one can stop it.
Even overt toxic spills that cause immediate death and destruction are met with lukewarm resistance. Pay off some people, maybe even a fine, but never seen as a continued threat or met with “we will bring those responsible to justice” remarks from our leaders.
Big Pharma has been pushing dangerous drugs and paying off regulators to allow shady practices, pushing drugs for unproven uses causing immense harm to patients, and looking the other way while massive quantities of dangerous prescription drugs are diverted to black markets.
A major cyber attack, like I described above would generate a massive response if it came from China. However, a parallel “attack” is alive and well and part of everyday life. Compromised financial systems. rigged LIBOR, stock market fraud, insider trading, obscene “fees” charged to consumers, illegal mortgage practices, etc. have already compromised the financial markets and are allowing a continuous stream of money to be siphoned from the general economy. (read everyone’s bank account).
As to control of our leaders in government, this needs no further comment. Money talks and it rules globally. More money equals more power and as more money concentrates in fewer hands, so will the power it creates.
Something that I rarely hear discussed is that money demands more money. Every investor wants a return on their investments. The uber-wealthy are no different except they have come to expect substantial returns even in bad markets. Managing wealth for clients demanding 10% or more return on their money in the current economy is no easy chore. And these investors are not interested in excuses. Not surprisingly, ethics and legality go out the window. Sure we want these managers to face jail not fines to their companies, but they are in fact the middle level, their clients demand their efforts, but remain protected at arms length. Further, the more they have, the more they demand to remove from the economy for their own benefit (as percent of their growing wealth). Aside from the ethics and devastating effects on society at large, this is also totally unsustainable in the long run.
Our leaders may not be truly “brainwashed”, but they are under no less control of their financial support systems (political contributors).
There are innumerable other ways that money (big money not local transactions) disrupts and corrupts our system. Local businesses go bankrupt daily under pressure of “big store” competition pulling local wealth out of the community and “redistributing” that wealth to distant “investors” leaving only low wage jobs in their wake. Many of these employees are just a step above indentured servants. Most live day-to-day, never save enough to provide any security and are often a paycheck away from financial disaster. Slowly, many of these people succumb, their homes are foreclosed, their savings drained. They fall prey to the numerous “traps” set for them by the system. Bad mortgage, job losses, credits problems, medical bankruptcies, etc. and their assets are moved from their “pile”, out of the local economy, to that of the distant uberwealthy. This must stop.
Step one is getting money out of politics and amending the constitution making clear corporations are not people and their money is not welcome in the political process. Public finance of elections is needed. Next is severe limits on the passage of wealth through generations creating a new class of “royal families”. Does anyone think that these families will not ultimately produce a finite number of truly evil, sociopathic individuals, with virtually unlimited power. People who would make the Koch Brothers seem like do-gooders.
Money it would seem is the ultimate weapon of mass destruction. Viewed from such a perspective, perhaps a limit on personal wealth and the uses permitted is no different than restricting individual (or corporate) access to chemical weapons.