Opportunism Embodied

20:34 Tue 23 Sep 2008. Updated: 17:43 28 Jan 2009
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So I think that my initial reaction to Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley becoming bank holding companies was rather naive. I thought that they were doing it as a defensive measure, because they were struggling. Now I wonder if in fact they’re doing it because they see an opportunity for even more plunder.

I should have kept Naomi Klein’s words in mind, and realized that since people were reacting to the financial problems as if they constituted “disaster”, those problems could be exploited like a disaster. In “disaster” conditions, the wealthy elites are usually quick to reshape things according to long-held plans. So if they can use this to achieve other goals, like increased “privatization” (such as of Social Security) then they will.

Michael Hudson covers most of the bases in a long but important article, but I think that the best concise summary comes from Who is IOZ?:

How can I make this into a metaphor that everyone can understand? Remember in mob movies, how they’d set up a front business to launder money, run as much through as they could, run the business into the ground, torch the place, and then collect the insurance? Well. There it is.
CONfidence, Part Two, Who is IOZ?, 22 September 2008

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