Who Are 'The Markets'?
The World Bank Building Washington
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Will someone answer this question?
The question haunts me, and this is an appeal for help with it. I'm an average guy, not the sharpest tool in the box, who needs to know why he's unlikely to leave the World in a better state than he found it 62 years ago. I want to know why future generations should find themselves forced to work until they're 70 and submit a large percentage of their life's effort, in the form of profit, to massive corporations, who seem answerable to no one. Also, I'd like to know why this ordinary lad, brought up relatively free from government by undemocratic monolithic blocs, now finds himself preparing to hand exactly that, on to these future generations.
If you clicked on this link to find answers, - the sort of answers I'm trying to find - I'm sorry, that would be like the blind leading the blind. If you want an argument, I'm sorry about that too, I won’t give you much of a run for your money; facts, go right over my head. Feel free to join my quest to find these answers. Feel free please, to give answers. For you, I'll leave a few interesting links to follow.
It seems to me, vital, that we bring certain people out of the shadows, so that we can take a good look at who they are, and what they do, because they have such a powerful influence on the way we have to live. These inscrutable people apparently have the arbitral right to pick off entire democratic nation states and hand down discipline upon them. They stalk economic stragglers like a pack of hyenas, making examples of them, which we all must witness in awe. In the UK, we stand by and watch our Southern European neighbours torn apart and picked clean to the bone, while we do nothing but talk of ways to appease them, in the same way our prehistoric ancestors would discuss appeasement of their gods.
Maybe I should ask who controls 'The Markets', although that's not how conventional wisdom would put the question. I didn't hear Nick Clegg (UK politician) say, during his TV appearance yesterday... if we don't comply with the demands of the people who control the markets, they'll force us to comply. He said if we don't do it, 'The Markets' will do it for us... and it will be much more painful (or words to that effect). Our politicians never question the legitimacy of this unelected clique, to influence all of our lives, to such an extent. Too few people do.
So, I ask why not. Like the little boy who said the "Emperor has no clothes", I feel free to ask impertinent questions - I have no great erudite reputation to uphold, so I needn’t apologise for my ignorance.
Here's another question. Why do these representatives of ‘the people’ not tell us precisely who it is we have to live in fear of? Name them please - so we can face them, and possibly help them to empathise with the rest of their race. I urge them to show us the faces of those human beings who charge UK tax payers £70 billion a year interest, in times of hardship - whilst the rest of us ‘are all in this together’ paying it.
Here are more questions that keep visiting my mind: Who has that kind of money to lend - when the rest of us have been done up like kippers? Where did they get it? Has it anything to do with rocketing profits from 30 years of suppressed wages, demutualisation, and deregulation? These are big questions, for us all.
These people aren’t aliens from outer Space; they're not Gods; we're not yet at a stage where computers, androids, or Dr Who's Daleks have enslaved the human race. For all the difference it makes, that might as well have happened. However, I'm certain they're human; they have names; they have Mums who gave birth to them - and I want to know who they are. When the UK Government puts VAT up to 20% to appease The Markets I, want names, addresses, and mug shots, please, of those who must be obeyed. Don't just say 'The Markets'; that could be anyone. We’re entitled, as human beings - the only animal that copulates face to face (sometimes) - to some dignity; if they’re going to screw us from behind, they might at least have the good manners to introduce themselves first.
We can't blame it all on George Soros. He said a long time ago, it's up to governments to regulate the sort of things he gets up to - and I agree. I'd also suggest that it's up to the electorate to make sure their governments regulate, and challenge those who would undermine democracy, whether it's premeditated or by default - we owe it to past and future generations.
There’s also the question why: why I hear so few people asking these questions. I don't mind sounding stupid - it won’t be the first time, or the last. If everyone else, and his pet hamster knows - if it's so obvious, that no one else would think to ask such a no-brainer question - I don't mind. Have a laugh at me with my stupidity, but tell me, please. Should we not ask to whom, and why, when we see our elected representatives pay homage, like medieval vassal kings?
Often I hear the politicos and punditry speak of “The Markets” like a mother, trying to frighten her children with the bogeyman - to get compliance. "Who is the bogeyman?” One rebellious child pipes up, while others are content to quake dutifully in their boots. “Why don’t we tie his shoelaces together, kick him up the chuff, and shout chase me?" (I can empathise with that child, and I have the scars, mostly mental, to prove it.) "We're gonna have trouble with that one." Says Mum - answering with the flat of her hand.
I can't remember Nick Clegg’s exact words yesterday, but he was effectively giving us the same mantra the people of Greece got about a month ago. Soon someone will put it to music, to drum it better into our heads - and when it rains, Cliff Richards will sing it at Wimbledon. I expect they’ll repeat it ad nauseam to any electorate, of any nation state, who try to get above their station, and vote for politicians with social conscience, and a sense of responsibility to future generations.
Yet, The Markets or - Capitalism, isn’t the problem. I wouldn’t criticise Jesus, for the way some Christians behave. Isms don’t enslave; people, do. There are megalomaniacs; there are those who follow like sheep; there are all kinds. I think of the old proverb, 'out of the frying pan and into the fire', when it comes to humans and isms. ‘The Markets’ are what we use. Like money, they’re merely a human device. So, if we want a pension; if we want to live in a house; if we want to eat, or have a pot to piss in, ‘The Markets’ are involved. That’s fine by me.
However, what we really need to do now, more than anything, is bring these 'Markets' under democratic control. Whether we, the people, should delegate the intricacies of that job to elected politicians, Superman, Woody Woodpecker, or even the legendary King Arthur, I don’t know, or care, but I will suggest that anyone willing to accept such a leadership task, will only be inspired to do so, where there is unflinching support, from a solid and determined majority.
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