Who’s the real hoodlum and pirate?
Chaucer’s advice that ‘One who has a glass head should beware of stones’ would seem quite appropriate for the editors of the Financial Times as they accuse Argentina today of being a hoodlum and economic pirate. It’s quite a bold accusation considering the vast global misery we see every day that’s directly traceable to the self dealing, greed, and, yes, piracy of their key readership – concentrated financial power.
It’s the global capitalist system which is the hoodlum, not Argentina. In every “developed” country in the world today we see worker incomes declining and stress levels rising. “Democratic” governments are literally attacking their own people enforcing an austerity demanded by the gods of finance. In the poorer countries, majorities live in horrible conditions and lack even basic needs. Yet at the same time the financial gods have never lived richer.
The first requirement of society is survival and it’s absurd to think niceties like investment treaties – negotiated secretly and undemocratically by the way – can be a barrier. It’s indefensible that human knowledge, technology, and the productive potential of society can be held hostage by an incredibly small number of hoodlums who claim the god given right to withhold production unless adequate “incentives” are provided.
Expropriation is perhaps the ultimate weapon available against consolidated economic power and one can only hope Argentina’s bold action is the harbinger of a much broader international movement. We clearly have the technologies and productive capacity for everyone to live well. It’s way past time the obscene economic power forming the base of the Financial Times is “euthanized” and we start working for ourselves rather than the Repsols of the world.