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Why the Current Structure is so Entrenched

June 13, 2011

Not only is the current structure of our economy and organization of our society designed to redistribute wealth from the poor to the rich, it is out of any direct human control.  There are systems in place to ensure that the right people are at the necessary places to ensure the self perpetuation of the system.  These controls are so pervasive that no person or small group of people can dismantle them.

The economic systems are the most straight forward.  Speculators and others in investment markets are interested in only one figure: how much return they can get.  In financial markets as fluid as those in the US there is no thought of long term investment.  What can yield the highest returns at the very moment gets funded.  A company making sacrifices at present for stability and growth down the road has a harder time getting access to capital.

The boards of directors of companies are under the direction of the owners who want results quickly less they sell their stakes.  These directors instruct their companies and hire executive officers to ensure that the company operates in such a short sighted manner.  If an executive officer or a majority of the board acts differently they are replaced, by the owners if necessary.  A speculator or investor with a different priority then the mainstream can operate but they are in such a minority that their efforts are drowned out.  Necessarily it is those with the short sighted mentality that make the biggest gains and thus develop the most weight in the decision making process.  This system self selects people to maintain the working order of the system and individuals who are different are marginalized.

The political system is controlled by the economic system.  Politicians are largely beholden to those who finance campaigns.  Even on a local level there is a lot of pressure to run a high money campaign as those have a greater chance of being successful.  Individuals and institutions with the most money are the ones with the deepest pockets and exert the most influence on the political process and on politicians.  Those who get the most money in the economic structures have the deepest pockets when buying politicians.  This with few exceptions here and there, political interests tend to align themselves with economic interests which are interested in massing concentrations of wealth in few individuals.

These control structures are so invasive that when someone in power wishes to change something, he or she is quickly found out of power and a more cooperative person in his or her place.  We live in a society whose goal is the perpetuation of these social structures.  In short, the people live to support the society as opposed to a situation where the society exists to support its people.

This is not only true in the decision making aspects of society but in all aspects as well.  Workers and others have their role to play.  There is no shortage of workers willing to work in jobs that damage their communities because of the price of being jobless and because of a positive unemployment rate.  Workers are often put in positions where they end up damaging themselves or damaging their families.

A family whose two adults work more than 60 hours a week to support itself cannot spend the time necessary to raise children in a healthy environment.  Families are living closer to their margin and have no room for safety and are failing at increasing rates (http://www.bankruptcyaction.com/USbankstats.htm).  In these situations, families and individuals who desire to act on principle are often damaged.  Those who are willing to compromise on anything survive and perpetuate a society in which we all are willing to turn on our neighbors if necessary.  Those who aren’t find themselves in dire situations.

These control structures are quite good and doing their job.  It may be better to say have a living wage and real unemployment protections but these cannot happen in our society the way it is structured and organized.  People often undercut their own long term benefit out of short term necessity.  Others who seek to change these structures find themselves defeated by those willing to benefit off of them.  These structures are so pervasive as to effect every area of society and to harm the vast majority of people in one way or another.

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From → Economics

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