US Catholic Faith in Real Life

Free market meltdown

Kevin Clarke | Print this pagePrint | Email this pageShare

Are we witnessing the end of neoliberalism in America or the birth of neo-neoliberalism (in which slavish devotees of deregulation will argue that what's most wrong with U.S. capital markets is not that we have too gutted regulatory structures but in fact that we have not completely obliterated them)? After decades of slavish devotion to major tenets of the neoliberal order like the primacy of free markets, a government run by presumed proponents of free marketeering has now stepped into the economic fray that is Wall Street repeatedly (and suggests it will again) to bail out:

A.) widows and orphans

B.) pensioners

C.) preferentially optionable poor people

D.) struggling working class laborers

E.) an increasingly impoverished environment

F.) Wall Street investors, mortgage debt holders, insurance conglomerate scammers, and feared and trembled originators of derivatives, financial "instruments" so complex most brokers can't explain them but reverence their power and might on faith alone.

If you guessed F, you are correct, sir.

Apparently all that free market hooey only applies to delveoping nations or people too poor to afford a corporate box at the new Yankee Stadium (may Ruth rest in peace).

But you don't have to listen to an economics (truly a dismal science of late) cretin like me. Here' sno less an authority than former World Bank chief economist Joseph Stiglitz expressing his jaw dropping amazement at yesterday's nationalization of insurance behemoth AIG.

Neoliberalism crica 2008: Tax payers shoulder the risk; Wall Street insiders escape with whatever profit is left behind after the house of cards collapses. What would Karl Marx do?