Orwellian Doublethink Part 3-@$$&#%#! Economics

When I say @$$&#%#! Economics, I mean things like using Collateralized Debt Obligations (CDOs) to artificially prop up housing prices as was done from 2004 until the Real Estate Bubble burst in 2007-2009. The main buyer of these CDOs was not the government. It was Banks using their own money to rig the marketplace by buying the middle portion of Mortgage backed Securities and turning them into new CDOs. It has a direct link to the repeal of the Glass-Steagal Act, which Larry Summers and Robert Rubin helped to get rid of in the Clinton Administration (with huge bipartisan support!).

In George Orwell's 1984, the Ministry of Truth (the Propaganda machine that lies to the people of Oceania) regularly rewrites history. Eurasia is an ally and Eastasia is an enemy in this world. Suddenly Eastasia is the enemy of Oceania and always has been and Eurasia is the ally of Oceania and always has been. Doublethink fits the ideology. The ministry of Truth says so. And if the evidence of your own eyes and ears is telling you otherwise, you need to work on your Doublethink!

Now, we have people using major news outlets to tell us that the evidence of my own eyes and ears is not to be trusted regarding recent history. According to them, the market's implosion was not the fault of Bankers creating fake demand in a huge historically pooch screwing moment of hubris. Nor was it the fault of people being suckered en masse into 3/1 or 5/1 ARM interest only loans that they needed in order to afford the artificially inflated properties. It was the fault of the Community Reinvestment Act. In order to buy this one, you need to indulge in Doublethink! After all, if it fits the ideology, then it must be true. If evidence is pointing towards CDOs, Credit Default Swaps, and 5/1 ARMs as the culprit, that evidence must be ignored. If only 1 in 4 higher priced 1st mortgage loans were made by CRA covered banks and the rest made by independent private mortgage companies and large banks, then that needs to be ignored as well.[link edited for length]

This was recent history that is being rewritten for ideological purposes. The result of @$$&#%#! Economics was devastating consequences for homeowners, the banks themselves and ultimately, the global economy. And if it happens again, you can thank the people who are rewriting history right now!

A hard sell by AM radio Newstalk stations, right wing think tanks and Fox News does not magically make the CRA the culprit in the Housing crisis any more than it made WMDs magically appear in Iraq.

Am I being too harsh using the term “@$$&#%# !Economics”? Given the fact that I am paying taxes to support these Bankers and their bonuses, I don't think so. Nearly 9 Billion man hours were worked to pay the taxes that composed AIG's $182 Billion Bailout, which flowed through banks such as Citigroup, Merril Lynch, and Goldman Sachs to help them out of trouble they caused by using CDOs to create false demand. And last time I looked, I still had Freedom of Speech. My calling this behavior “@$$&#%# !Economics” is me being polite.

And that's just the beginning; @$$&#%#! Economics is an accurate description of

  • One half of US agribusiness being subsidized by corporate welfare when cheaper crops are available abroad.
  • Pharmaceutical companies preventing the largest buyer of their products, the US Govt., from negotiating prices thereby growing the deficit and increasing revenues at the expense of the US taxpayer.
  • Endless giveaways of natural resources to corporations- wars fought for energy companies, free spectrum provided to broadcasters with no restraint on balanced commentary, low royalties levied on mining companies, subsidies of lumber companies.

@$$&#%#! Economics can not survive with a large amount of Orwellian Doublethink. In order for people to allow this parasitic behavior, they need to believe that this is not parasitic behavior. They need to believe that people like Ken Lewis of Bank of America, Lloyd Blankfien of Goldman Sachs, John Mack of Morgan Stanley, are job producers as they siphon off the wealth of this country. These men and 10 other Bankers firmly believe that they are entitled to a system were profits are privatized and costs are socialized. If they succeed, they will make us go through this all over again only worse.


The last time they succeeded in bleeding their banks and clients dry and stand before us with economy held hostage, we were staring at two options. We could have used taxpayer funds to buy the worthless assets (which they caused by selling CDOs to themselves) or we could have bought the banks and held them temporarily. It would have been much more cost effective to buy the banks outright. And I'm not alone. Fed Chairman, Alan Greenspan (who bears a huge responsibility for this, but that's another column) is a well-known acolyte of Ayn Rand. He said, “It may be necessary to temporarily nationalize some banks in order to facilitate a swift and orderly restructuring.” Conservative Senator Lindsay Graham, said “If nationalization is what works, then we should do it. It doesn't matter what you call it, but we can't keep on funding these zombie banks [without gaining public control]. That's what the Japanese did. In limited circumstances the Swedish model makes sense for the US.” [link edited for length]

And what happened? Both parties took money from the banking lobby and we wound up going with the most expensive option.

George Orwell got so much right about modern politics when he wrote 1984. In the tradition of Doublethink, Obama goes for the most expensive option (at the advice of people like Summers, Geitner, and Rubin-the same people who set us all up for this in the 1990's with getting rid of Glass-Steagall) and then creates a Deficit commission. In the tradition of Doublethink, the Bush Tax Cuts to the wealthy were not allowed to expire (cost to the US Citizen taxpayers-$860 Billion) which is regarded in Washington Elite circles as good for the economy and the unpopular TARP was only $700 Billion initially (and has been downgraded to a cost of $50 Billion) and has been used by those Washington Elites to push us towards Austerity measures. [link edited for length]. And then of course there's the money pit that is the Iraq, Pakistan, and Afghan Wars. In addition to the 876 Billion in Current Military and $522 Billion in Past Military outlays, there is an additional $159 billion that is currently off the books to fight these Wars. George Orwell predicted wars that are not meant to be won, only continued. We don't have exit strategies for any of these wars, so a state of Orwellian Doublethink is needed to rationalize the state we are currently in.

@$$&#%#! Economics is not only the abuse of Capitalism-[link edited for length] , it is the financial model used to drain riches from an empire before it's collapse. Orwellian Doublethink is the tool that Washington Elites use to rationalize that what they are doing.

@$$&#%#! Economics is draining us and they couldn't do it without Orwellian Doublethink.