How Empires Fall: Moral Decay – Charles Hugh Smith (04/24/2019)

There is a name for this institutionalized, commoditized fraud: moral decay

Moral decay is an interesting phenomenon: we spot it easily in our partisan-politics opponents and BAU (business as usual) government/private-sector dealings (are those $3,000 Pentagon hammers now $5,000 each or $10,000 each? It’s hard to keep current…), and we’re suitably indignant when non-partisan corruption is discovered in supposed meritocracies such as the college admissions process.

But we’re less adept, it seems, at discerning systemic moral decay, which infects the very foundations of the economy and society.

Consider America’s favorite pastime, corrosive partisan politics.  is often traced back to (surprise!) extreme partisans, but chart below shows, political partisanship has risen in with wealth-income inequality, which it itself the deeply systemic corruption, as the system is rigged to benefit at the expense of the many. (Chart courtesy of Slope of Hope.)

phrase that describes a socio-economic system becoming the means aggrandizement at the expense of civil society itself: moral decay.

can we describe a system whose inputs and processes are rigged output is the vast majority of all income gains flow to the top 0.1%? (See chart below.)

When a socio-economic system institutionalizes the extralegal privileges of wealth and power, that is moral decay. When only responds in ways that first serve the interests of entrenched insiders, that is moral decay. When the financial system is rigged to sluice income and wealth to of the wealth-power pyramid while the productive via inflation and taxes, that’s moral decay. (See chart below of workers’ share of the national income.)

What are initial public offerings (IPOs) of unprofitable Unicorns but a form of institutionalized, commoditized fraud based on the sale of worthless securities to greater fools who are gambling that a second wave of even greater fools will pay a premium to gamble that the worthless shares can be sold to a third wave of supremely greater fools? There is a name for this institutionalized, commoditized fraud: moral decay.

What are stock buy-backs but a form of institutionalized, commoditized fraud  insiders borrow vast sums to reduce the number of to boost the per-share profits and hence the valuation portfolios and stock options? How does civil society benefit hyper-financialized concentration of wealth and thus ?

There is a name for this institutionalized, commoditized fraud: moral decay

fatally riddled with institutionalized moral decay, and so are powers of the EU, Japan, Russia China. is the only possible output of systems that place of personal wealth and political power above all and economic values. When every system is nothing but a institutionalize and commodify fraud and extralegal privilege, no saving such a perversely asymmetric system from internal collapse.

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