The reality is the roulette wheel is rigged and only chumps believe it’s a fair game.
It’s easy to lay America’s visible frustrations at the feet of Covid lockdowns or political
polarization, but this conveniently ignores the real driver: systemic unfairness. The status
quo has been increasingly rigged to benefit insiders and elites as the powers of central banks and
governments have picked the winners (cronies, insiders, cartels and monopolies) and shifted the
losses and risks onto the losers (the rest of us).
We now live in the world the 19th-century French economist Frederic Bastiat so aptly described:
“When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men in a society, over the course of time
they create for themselves a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that glorifies it.”
As I noted in
The One Chart That Predicts our Future, ours is a two-tier society and economy with
a broken ladder of social mobility for those trying to reach the security of the technocrat class
and a well-greased slide for everyone who trips and slides from relative security down to the
ever-expanding ALICE-precariat class: assets limited, income constrained, employed.
As Bastiat observed, those rigging the system to benefit themselves always create a legal
system that lets them off scot-free and a PR scheme that glorifies their predation as well-deserved
rewards that are the natural due of their enormous appetite for hard work and innovation.
You know, hard work and innovation like this:
Embezzling a couple billion dollars also earns you a get out of jail free card: none
of the perps in Wall Street’s skims, scams and frauds ever gets indicted, much less convicted, and
none of Wall Street’s legalized looters ever goes to prison.
And this is a fair and just system? Uh, right. Meanwhile, the reality is the roulette wheel is
rigged and only chumps believe
it’s a fair game. Those who know it’s rigged have essentially zero agency (control / power)
or capital to demand an unrigged game or finagle their way into the elite class doing the skimming.
The net result is soaring frustration with a patently unfair system that’s touted as the fairest
in the entire world. Gordon Long and I do a deep dive into the frustrations with systemic
unfairness in our new video,
The Frustrations of Unfairness Are Reaching a Boiling Point.
The key takeaway in my view is the unfairness isn’t limited to the economy, society or politics–
it’s manifesting in all three realms. It isn’t just frustration with domestic issues–the global
economic order is also a source of unfairness and powerlessness.
We each drew up a list of specific drivers of unfairness / frustration. Here’s my list:
And here’s Gordon’s list:
There is much more in
our presentation. These are the dynamics that are tearing apart our social cohesion
and that will soon start destabilizing the economy–regardless of how much “money” the
Federal Reserve prints.
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