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Hullabaloo


Friday, November 21, 2008

 
Vulgar Randism

by digby

It's heating up. Get a load of this:

Personally, I tend to bristle at extortion attempts and that is exactly what this amounts to; "buy our lousy cars and subsidize our worthless industry, or you'll get hurt". Hey, I'm sure that kind of thing works great at UAW meetings, but it does not work with honest people who earn their money through ingenuity and effort.


Apparently, people who earn their living in manufacturing plants aren't honest --- and they don't earn their money through ingenuity and effort (like brilliant hedge fund managers.)

I particularly liked this comment:

The Makers are not incompetant and that is a stupid comment.

They deserve to fail but frankly that business has been REGULATED AND TAXED TO ITS DEATH BED.

No management team can rescue this ship because between the Unions, the EPA, the State Gov.ts and Congress they bled them dry.


The cult of John Galt is stronger than ever.

Here's one example --- Bob Nardelli former CEO of GE, which is like being Business Jesus. Then, despite having no retail experience, he went to Home Depot, where the stock price stayed flat despite a bull market and :

... his $240 million compensation eventually earned the ire of investors. His blunt, critical and autocratic management style turned off employees and the public. While the board strongly stood by him for most of his tenure, questions about his leadership mounted in 2006, and in an ominous portent of the near future, he was the only director present at the annual meeting; he only allowed shareholders to speak for a minute each. When the board reportedly ousted him in January 2007, Nardelli's severance package was estimated at $210 million.

Naturally, Chrysler immediately hired him.

This is the culture that has brought the economy to the brink --- vastly overvalued masters of the universe, swallowing fire hoses of money as they failed up over and over again. And now that the system if finally crushing under the weight of all this profligacy and bad management, the brainwashed conservative Randians are blaming the "parasites" for the failure, just as they've been programmed to do.

I don't believe in banning books or censoring curriculum, but just because Atlas Shrugged is a nauseatingly puerile exercise in hot capitalist fantasy doesn't mean it doesn't contain some dangerous and powerful ideas that need to be taken seriously and countered systematically. It's very bad for our culture for that piece of trash to be so influential. The Randians are donating millions of books to high schools and endowing chairs at universities to sell this pernicious protection racket for the malefactors of great wealth. Far more people have been exposed to this received conservative wisdom than have even a bare knowledge of Karl Marx (or Adam Smith.) It's not just another bad romance novel.

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