Naomi Klein's book "Shock Doctrine" talks about how organized mobs of rich people have succeeded in going into countries around the world, stealing all the resources, and essentially enslaving all the people.
Her central theory is that first a "crisis" occurs or is created (such as by the Henry Kissinger-directed military coup in Chile and kidnapping, torture, and murder of thousands of their people). When the "crisis" occurs, and immediately thereafter, the citizens are terrified, confused, panicked, and desperately seek safety and protection. Therefore, it is good time for the mobs to move in, take over, get the government to declare martial law, for example, pass new laws taking away the people's rights. Maybe throw lots of people out of work so they are desperately poor. Murder people. Spread terror across the land so nobody will stand up to the government.
Then the organized capital mob moves in and takes over all the resources. That was Paul Bremer's job in Iraq. The U.S. actually sent him into Baghdad in the early days of that war, and gave him a paper saying that he was the "pretend" ruler of Iraq, and anything he did would become the law of Iraq forever. So for example, his criminal gang brought in all sorts of laws which he signed, and which now theoretically will control Iraq forever. Mostly financial laws. Such as laws saying that the right to own or operate utilities belong to private companies (American ones). One law says that if anybody in Iraq makes a widget that is similar to a widget that is patented inside the U.S., then the Iraqi citizen has to pay royalties to the U.S.. One law says that any seed planted in Iraq which is patented will force the Iraqi farmers to pay royalties to U.S. chemical companies (they're the ones who are chemically altering seeds).
In Chile, they passed laws eliminating all rights and freedoms of the people, eliminating all social spending. Thirsty? Too bad. The water which used to belong to the people is now claimed by some corporation. Schools? Closed. No money for any public services.
Then the rich people own and control everything and get all the money.
That's the basic theory.
In the 1950s, some very bad groups in this country created a national hysteria about communism. Sometimes called a "commie under every bed." People were led to believe that everyone was a communist, intent on a violent revolution to overthrow the government and kill all the people. And so we had Congress taken over by clowns who led national witchhunts, people across the land blacklisted, careers destroyed, lives destroyed, by allegations that they were communists. And many laws were passed which were very repressive, took away people's rights.
More recently, we have the religious right peddling their form of insanity, telling people that anyone who is not like them, not a member of their church, does not believe like they do, is a bad person, turning neighbor against neighbor, state against state, dividing the land and creating a weakness in the nation. Which then was exploited beginning with Reagan who got elected claiming he was the great white savior, he hated gays, he hated everyone who wasn't just like him. And he did it all with a cheerful little smile. And at the same time, and over the next 30 years, the financial mob has been looting the country. Wages have been frozen at 1970 levels. All the money, all the growth, all the tech, all the "we're such a successful nation" -- all that money went into the pockets of the top 10% in this country. Working people's wages were frozen or they actually lost ground. No more employer-funded pensions, for example. No more employer-funded healthcare. No more job security. All gone.
Then we've had the Bush Reign of Terror in which the new commie-under-the-bed was the Terrorist in the Omaha mall. Yes we did have a terrible attack on 9/11. But no, it turns out, Iraq had nothing to do with it. It was a gangland hit. bin Laden's gang. They murdered 3000 people. We should have gone and gotten bin Laden, lit him on fire, then thrown him off the tallest building in the country. On live TV. That's what we should have done. Instead, we started wars against the poorest people in the world (Afthanistan) although nobody seems to know why we are still in that country. Other than that major oil companies have wanted to run a pipeline across Afghanistan for years, but the government wouldn't agree. (Want to bet that will be the outcome of this war?). And we invade Iraq to steal their oil and build permanent bases so we could occupy the country for the next 30 years, until their oil is gone.
And the Terrorist in the Omaha mall worked to let the Bush Cheney government turn over public resources to the private equity mob, eliminate rights and freedoms of the people, loot the nation.
So what's next? What is the next crisis that will be used to accomplish the final nail in the coffin of our country?
Is it the "Too Big To Fail" doctrine? Can't they use that to take all our money forever. Isn't that just like anti-communism? (We need more money for the defense industry, to stop the commies). Or The Terrorist In The Omaha Mall (you must give all your rights and freedoms so we can "find" the terrorists and "stop them").
Too Big To Fail: we actually have 30 year old silk-shirt-wearing cocaine-sniffing criminals in Six Hundred Dollar shoes who are telling us that they refuse to work unless they get at least $2.0 million in bonuses. It sounds like a joke, but everyone is pretending it's serious.
These Wall Street criminals should be grateful if they walk away with their lives. Fire them. Hire people who are smart, hard-working, and competent. And ethical. Fire every person in management. Then indict them and seize all their assets.
Is it possible that Congress is so spineless? Or is this just corruption as usual?
As for the whole argument that the AIG bonuses (admittedly small potatoes compared to the big pictures) are "Contractual," so nobody could stop it. Nonsense. If AIG is so broke, as they claim, throw them into bankruptcy court and the judge will say no bonus. Then do a re-organization, under public scrutiny, and go from there. These people are not so stupid that they don't understand how to take care of this.
And here's another idea: put somebody in charge of the economy who has no relationship with Wall Street, and make all communications public. No more Wall Street secret threats or bribes.
Why does Wall Street get to run our country?