As the nation absorbs the impact of its new right wing-nut Tea Party movement, and how it might influence the outcome of the mid-term elections in November, Wall Street is hopping up and down with glee.
Most do not realize the extent to which Wall Street, which accumulates its riches as a parasite on the real economy, favors a political climate of radical libertarianism, bordering on lawlessness and anarchy. They had that environment working for them, mostly due to a wider national negligence and supportive White House, right up until the meltdown of the global economy over the summer of 2008.
Wall Street types are not typical capitalists, who navigate the production and marketing of their wares while supporting the cultivation of a wider context of weal and civility in order to keep their customers and workforces productive and content.
Wall Street has no regard for such things, but only for how to indoctrinate their clever business school grads into the heady world of radical amorality.
Selfish self-interest and greed for its own sake are the only criteria for behavior in this world, and whatever needs doing to protect the environment that permits this in an unbridled fashion is how they behave in the national political arena.
So, an embattled Wall Street launched the Tea Party movement, and persuaded one the most reprehensible decisions ever by a U.S. Supreme Court to allow unrestricted, unaccountable corporate giving to political campaigns.
Those two factors will result in a Wall Street coup this November unmatched in recent history, and it could be only the beginning.
The Tea Party arose as the Frankenstein monster cobbled together with limitless funding from wealthy libertarians and other Wall Street types to task Dick Armey’s Freedom Works with the launch a fruits-to-nuts faux grassroots movement to disrupt Congressional town hall meetings in the summer of 2009.
The aim was not merely to derail health care reform, but to forge a battering ram to transform the Republican Party, shifting its center far to the libertarian right, even at the expense of the normal self-interests of ordinary business people and other capitalist types.
This movement is rooted in radical notions of selfish self-interest, which is why it has targeted anything resembling a moderate Republican for defeat.
Many of the incumbent Republicans they unseated in primaries this year were not so moderate, and their crime was not a willingness to occasionally act in a bi-partisan way. No, they were targeted because they represented the traditional alliance between the GOP and ordinary pro-capitalist interests.
For them, it is time for the pure and unadulterated emotion of selfish rage to storm the barricades, to rip asunder all former social contracts and to give everyone (as in Wall Street) the open field they want to loot and exploit without restraint.
There is a long and sordid tradition behind this approach in human history, and in the modern era, it emerged as the precursors to European fascism.
Selfish self-interest run amok is fueled by convincing people someone is trying to take their things away. Rattled by losing their jobs and household incomes, millions are willing to be pointed by behind-the-scene powerful interests against, and to take out their fury on, whomever can be cast in the role of their enemy. In fascist Germany, it was the Jews. Now in the U.S., it is immigrants, it is Muslims, it is homosexuals, it is liberals and alleged socialists.
In addition to Wall Street’s political extensions, such as Freedom Works, this anarcho-libertarian treachery has been directed to control the media – the takeover of the national radio talk show networks and entities such as Fox News – and to give rise to radical libertarian think tanks in Washington, such as the Cato Institute and Heritage Foundation, that couch this madness in ostensibly credible political working papers.
On college campuses, it is fueled by the philosophies of Ayn Rand and the post-moderns, who elevate selfishness to a veritable theological imperative. The religious right has a special role, to capture the very concept of morality in a rigid, hate-filled dogma that helps fuel rage against the anarchists’ evil “others.”
All this is what is arrayed against civilization, itself, perhaps on the brink of a new Dark Age.