Marx and Lenin When We Need Them?
By Paul Craig Roberts
May 01, 2016 "Information
- Marx and Lenin were ahead of their time. Marx
wrote before offshoring of jobs and the
financialization of the economy. Lenin presided over
a communist revolution that jumped the gun by taking
place in a country in which feudal elements still
predominated over capitalism. In 21st century
America capitalism has been unfettered from the
regulations that democratized it and made it serve
society. Today capitalism is being financialized
with the consequence that its productive power is
being drained into the service of debt.
When I was a
young man, an individual with one million dollars
was very rich. Anyone with a few millions more was
considered richer than rich. Today there are people
who have thousands of millions of dollars.
their billions by producing goods and services sold
neoliberal economists, who prescribe economic policy
not only in the West but also in Russia and China,
incorrectly claim that money received is money
earned. In fact, how did the Less-Than-One-Percent
really get their thousands of millions?
them through political connections and through
purely financial transactions.
Soviet Union fell apart as a consequence of hardline
communists arresting President Gorbachev, well
connected individuals in Russia and the Soviet
province of Ukraine, especially those well connected
to Washington and Israel, ended up with massive
holdings that formerly were state properties.
In the US
billionaires result from bank lending for leveraged
takeovers of companies. The takeovers produce riches
for the takeover person from curtailing company
pensions and using the company’s cash to pay off the
takeover loan. Often the company and its employees
are ruined, but the takeover artist walks away with
massive amounts of money. Manipulation of initial
public offerings are another source of riches as are
economists, and Michael Hudson today, define these
profits as “economic rents,” the income from which
required no increase in real output to produce. In
other words, these billionaire wealth gains are a
form of parasitism based on exploitation and not on
the production of real output. The gains result from
draining income from production into the service of
capitalist economies are far more dysfunctional than
Marx supposed. For the past two decades Western
economies have served no one but the very rich, and
the exploited masses have submitted to their
exploitation. The Western public may as well be
There is no
reason for a person to have thousands of millions of
dollars. The money elevates the political power of
individuals over the power of the electorate.
Indeed, the money becomes the electorate. The money
is used to purchase political control, which
destroys representative government. Billionaires,
such as Sheldon Adelson, George Soros, and the Koch
brothers, use their billionaire fortunes to control
the US government in their interests. A Republican
Supreme Court has made this easier for them.
The rise of
financial power in Russia and China has created
private power centers in those countries that, like
the ones in the US, are independent of the
governments. These power centers have the potential
to capture the governments and to use public offices
to further concentrate wealth in few hands.
Privatizations in Russia and China will strengthen
the independent power of narrow private interests as
they have in Europe and the UK. Neoliberal economics
guarantees that eventually private money controls
international charity headquartered in Oxford,
England, reports that 62 billionaires own half of
the wealth in the world.
Warren Buffett, one of the richest
mega-billionaires, who said that his secretary’s tax
rate was higher than his. If governments do not
rectify this, revolution will.
apparently voters won’t, at least not in the US.
Hillary represents the One Percent, as the
Clinton’s $153,000,000 in speaking fees attest, but
the 99 percent are self-destructing by voting in
support of Hillary’s ambition to gain the
presidency. Apparently, H. L. Mencken was correct,
the vast majority of Americans are morons.
Paul Craig Roberts was Assistant Secretary
of the Treasury for Economic Policy and associate
editor of the Wall Street Journal. He was columnist
for Business Week, Scripps Howard News Service, and
Creators Syndicate. He has had many university
appointments. His internet columns have attracted a
worldwide following. Roberts' latest books are
of Laissez Faire Capitalism and Economic Dissolution
of the West,
Neoconservative Threat to World Order.