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Morals, Ethics, and the Role of Gov’t in a Capitalist Economy

Science is base on experiments.  Experiments are based on observation.  This process of drawing conclusions by observing the physical world is called empiricism.  Empirical observations are the building blocks of science.  This process also applies to moral and ethical behavior.  Morals and ethics are rooted in observing and practicing human behaviors that have proven to yield the highest quality of life for individuals and communities.  The positive effects of moral behavior have been proven throughout human history.  Contrary to the theory of moral relativism, the beneficial effects of moral behavior are based on proven scientific fact, not transient perception.

Take greed for example, how many parents intentionally teach their children to practice greed within their own family?  Few, if any.  Why?  It would create a miserable family experience.  Greed is NEVER good if the objective is a just, moral society based on the rule of law.  This isn’t rocket science and this self evident truth didn’t change because 9-11 “happened”.  The proven benefits of moral behavior are not relative, and their relevance does not diminish because of technology, terrorism, the passage of time, or a culture of corruption.

Four thousand years ago, the Babylonian King Hammurabi created a sophisticated code of laws governing the behavior of individuals and businesses.  The Code of Hammurabi covered such matters as false accusation, witchcraft, military service, land and business regulations, family laws, tariffs, wages, trade, loans and debts.  The main principle of the code was that “the strong shall not injure the weak.”  The code set up a social order based on the rights of the individual and backed by the supreme authority of the law.  These basic principles are found in ancient Greek democracy, the Roman Republic, and America’s founding documents, just to name a few.  So in a just, moral society, markets are not “free”, they are subject to the rule of law and subordinate to the government that enforces the law.

Free market disciples believe markets are amoral, i.e., “free” from any judgment, whether moral or immoral.  But when one considers that markets are created and run by humans, the argument that markets are amoral falls apart.  Every nation on earth has laws against fraud, theft, murder, etc., and these laws are based on moral judgments.  So the argument that man made markets are amoral is just a clever attempt to place financial elites above the law.  Google “amoral markets”, you’ll find some interesting information.  Laws against murder, theft, fraud, assault, etc., are based on universally accepted notions of morality that are not specific to any religion.  Even atheists agree to subject themselves to these fundamental notions of right and wrong.

Our founders instituted a government based on equality before the law, not equality of income or outcome.  Equality before the law means everybody plays by the same rules.  This creates a level playing field and a competitive efficient economy based on merit, not privilege.  The role of government in a capitalist economy is similar to that of a referee in professional sports, i.e., fairly enforce the rules so the game is competitive.  If one team is allowed to step out of bounds without being penalized, the game would be rigged.  This is precisely the situation with Too Big To Fail (TBTF) banks.  TBTF banks are the product of a market “free” from the rules of capitalism.  Businesses must be allowed to fail if they exercise poor judgement, this is one of the basic rules of capitalism.  America’s founders wanted a market economy, not a free market, i.e., a market free from the rule of law and rules of capitalism.  An interesting source is the book  Godonomics, which illustrates the Biblical principles behind private property rights and market economies based on moral principles.

By inserting the Commerce Clause into the U.S. Constitution, the framers made market principles subordinate to the principles of the Constitution and Bill of Rights, the Supreme Law of the land.  But the Commerce Clause also limits government’s ability to interfere in the market activities of citizens.  In his ruling on Obamacare, Chief Justice Roberts said the “individual mandate is not a valid exercise of Congress’s power under the Commerce Clause”.  But then Roberts betrayed the intent of the framers and ruled the individual mandate is a Constitutional tax.

Adam Smith’s book The Wealth of Nations is often cited by free market disciples as a justification for getting government out of business.  They want a market “free” from legal and moral Constitutional constraints, so they never mention another book by Smith titled The Theory of Moral Sentiment.  He concludes that morality plays a significant role in economic activity, and as a result, human beings do not make decisions based solely on greedy self interest.  Smith recognized the innate human quality known as enlightened self interest, i.e., the instinctual understanding that helping the less fortunate serves ones own self interest.  Helping the less fortunate does not include an 8.6 TRILLION dollar bailout of Wall Street banks.

One example of enlightened self interest is the creation of public utilities to deliver electricity.  If left solely in private hands, poor people and small businesses could be priced out of the market.  Electricity is considered an essential service, so public utilities were created and they’ve delivered cost efficient, high quality products that serve individual and commercial interests very well.  This same model should be applied to delivery of basic healthcare services.  Public healthcare utilities, managed by the states, could exist along side private companies and provide cost efficient services, without heavy handed mandates requiring everyone to purchase a particular product.

Most of the founding fathers believed in God and drew on the moral values of the Enlightenment when creating our founding documents.  The principles codified in our founding documents are based on thousands of years of empirical evidence, and represent an enlightened moral view of government and the world.  Wall Street’s 650 TRILLION derivatives market is referred to as “dark money” because it’s unregulated.  The values represented by dark money are a direct attack on Enlightenment values codified in the Declaration, Constitution and Bill of Rights.  Fascist elites refuse to accept the self evident truths and moral principles of enlightened government.  So they’re using the immoral power of dark money to enslave sovereign nations and create a world governed by the principles of organized crime.

Unlike contracts traded on exchanges (NYSE, CME, CBOT), dark derivative contracts, and the risks associated with them, are hidden from controlled exchanges and regulators.  The unregulated derivatives market gives fascist elites the leverage necessary to extort concessions from sovereign nations.  This is possible because a 650 TRILLION unregulated market is much larger than the combined GDP of all the world’s nations.  Most derivative contracts are nothing more than bets like those placed in a Vegas casino, and Dodd-Frank makes taxpayers responsible when enough bets go bad.   Propagandists call this the free market.  In reality, it’s a market free from the rule of law and rules of capitalism, which is socialism trending toward fascism. 

Propagandists on the left pretend to oppose Wall Street’s socialist agenda while advocating for more socialism.  Oops!  Maybe they didn’t get the memo, TBTF banks epitomize socialistic fascism.  Securities lawyer Lynn Stout wrote an easy to understand article about derivatives.  It explains how returning to common law regulation of derivatives may prevent another crisis.  Global banks control the derivatives market and use it to threaten nations with economic collapse if they don’t give up their sovereignty.  Two examples are the TARP bailout and Dodd-Frank, Obama’s finance reform bill.  Some Congressional members were told the U.S. would be under martial law if they didn’t pass TARP.  And Dodd-Frank’s Resolution Authority allows the executive branch to spend TRILLIONS on future Wall Street bailouts, without Congressional approval.  Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron said Dodd-Frank will “institutionalize TARP” for bank holding companies. 

To varying degrees, the U.S. economy has always been a public-private partnership.  An example that best illustrates the proper use of public-private partnerships is Thomas Jefferson’s Louisiana Purchase.  But even Jefferson acknowledged he may have exceeded Constitutional limits with the Louisiana Purchase.  In spite of stretching Constitutional limits, it may have been the most successful economic development program in U.S. history.  However,  public-private partnerships should facilitate a competitive, efficient market based on merit, and not crony socialism based on privilege.  Today’s public-private partnerships almost always subsidize a global network of cronies while dumping the cost of subsidies on U.S. taxpayers.  Bipartisan leaders and CEO’s of multinationals justify their global system of subsidized cronyism by calling it free market capitalism and free trade.

Thomas Hoenig is President of the Kansas City Federal Reserve.  He says TBTF banks are “inconsistent with the concept of capitalism”, and have the availability of “different rules”.  Senator Brown said large companies can risk bankruptcy at the expense of society, “this is not capitalism in any sense of the word”.  Economist Joseph Stiglitz said the economy is severely distorted by large banks who privatize profits and socialize losses, ”this isn’t capitalism”.  Harvard economist Jeffrey Miron said, ”capitalism without failure is like religion without hell, there has to be a risk of punishment if you make mistakes, and with the banks, we didn’t do that”.  Hoenig says TBTF banks are too big to exist and should be broken up by reinstating Glass Steagall, which kept Wall Street speculation in check until it was repealed in 1999.  Click here and listen to Mr. Hoenig’s speech.

Neil Barofsky was the Inspector General for TARP.  Regarding the nine largest banks, he said ”it didn’t matter if they were cooking the books on their balance sheets, Treasury was giving them money anyway.  In fact, if they had even larger holes on their balance sheets due to FRAUD, that would’ve been only more reason for Treasury to give them money”.  William Black was Deputy Director of the Savings and Loan Corporation during the S&L meltdown, and helped obtain 1000 criminal convictions of bankers.  He says the public cost of the 2008 financial crisis is “seventy times greater” than the S&L crisis, but in spite of compelling evidence demonstrating bank fraud, there have been few criminal prosecutions.  Click here and listen to a radio interview where Black presents evidence for prosecuting financial fraud.  Bottom line, if America is going to have a competitive, capitalist, market economy,  government must equally enforce the rule of law and rules of capitalism.

In the Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson said governments are instituted in order to secure our unalienable rights.  A capitalist economic system provides the greatest amount of freedom for individuals to exercise those rights, and government’s role is to protect those rights from all enemies foreign and domestic.   Authoritarian ideologies like Communism are a threat to our Constitutional and economic freedoms, so government must protect the U.S. economy from authoritarian regimes.  That’s why Ronald Reagan rejected free trade and didn’t outsource America’s manufacturing base to the Soviet Union, even though labor costs were much lower under the authoritarian Communist regime.

From 1789 to 1999 the U.S. government engaged in trade protection, and as a result, the U.S. economy became the most prosperous, powerful economy in world history.  But ended Clinton implemented free trade policies, which are based on the notion there’s nothing exceptional about America, we’re just one nation among many so trade policy shouldn’t be used to protect American values.  I consider this treason.  Why?  Free trade gives brutal dictatorships like Communist China, which tortures its citizens, competitive advantage over America.  The Chinese gov’t uses strong arm tactics to force people to work for slave wages, so competing with slavery will require Americans to first become slaves.  The terms “free” market and “free” trade describe an economic model free from moral and legal Constitutional constraints.  Free trade is used to subsidize totalitarian regimes at the expense of Western representative governments.

Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, etc. whine about Obama’s progressive agenda to redistribute wealth to the poor.  And yet, they support free trade, which is the single largest redistribution of wealth in history.  They say free trade is the result of globalization, which is driven by the invisible hand of the market.  This is a lie.  First of all, the economy was global when Columbus stumbled on America in search of a new trade route to the East Indies.  When Beck and Limbaugh talk about globalization, they’re talking about government trade policies that redistribute capital and technology to emerging market countries, a.k.a., the BRIC (Brazil, Russia, India, China).

Charlie Rose discussed free trade and globalization with Jim O’Neill, Chairman of Goldman Sachs Asset Management.  The show began with Mr. O’Neill taking credit for coining the term BRIC.  Goldman’s CEO Lloyd Blankfein wanted to call emerging markets led by China CRIB, but O’Neill wanted the emerging markets represented by the term BRIC.  The invisible hand of the market became visible shortly after 14min into the interview.  That’s when Charlie Rose asked Jim O’Neill about the possibility of China’s bubble bursting.  JIm said, “Some days I wake up and think, what have I created with this damn thing?  I worry about that.”  Goldman Sachs was instrumental in restructuring trade policy to favor Communist China.  The time of referenced quotes is derived from placing the cursor over the timeline, not the number at the end of the timeline.

Shortly after 29min/45sec O’Neill said, “In order for the world to progress, we have to let some things go to other people.”  Charlie then alluded to the massive transfer of wealth from the U.S. to China and asked, “What are the political implications for all this, especially for this country which has been on top for so long?”  Jim responded, “I’d like to hear President Obama say, how do we adjust before he says how do we compete”.  Jim then referred to Obama’s economic adviser Larry Summers saying, “he understands [China's] relative advantage in international trade.”  Free trade is designed to pick winners and losers in the global economy and Goldman Sachs picked America to lose.  Because of their influence in Washington DC, Goldman Sachs is referred to as Government Sachs.  Financial elites have achieved  regulatory capture and subverted representative government.

Free trade has yielded a 600 Billion annual trade deficit with the world, 300 Billion with the Communist government of China.  Pat Mulloy is a member of the US/China Economic and Security Review Commission.  He says trade deficits will result in the Communist government of China owning large chunks of the U.S. economy, and Chinese investments are not coming back to buy our goods, they’re coming back to buy America.  Rep. Brad Sherman said the “cancerous” trade relationship with China is driven by enormous corporate power.  This is similar to what King George III and his private sector cronies were doing to the American colonies.  King George had given the British East India Company a monopoly on the tea trade, which enforced tea taxes and extracted wealth for investments in other parts of the British Empire.

After the American Revolution, corporations remained small institutions chartered at the state level for specific purposes.  By law, they could not make political contributions, could not own stock in other companies, were required to serve the public interest, and could only exist for a limited period of time.  And corporate owners were liable for losses and crimes committed by the corporation.  John D. Rockefeller led efforts to change laws requiring corporate owners to serve the public interest and be liable for losses and crimes.  President Sherman passed the Sherman Anti-Trust Act as a means to curb the power of monopolistic corporations that were destroying competitive markets.  This led to the break up of Rockefeller’s Standard Oil monopoly, and in 1902, President Roosevelt used anti-trust law to break up J.P. Morgan’s banking monopoly.  This is the role government needs to play in order to maintain a competitive market economy.  Click here for a brief history of corporations in the United States of America.

This Wall Street Journal article ”China’s Superior Economic Model”, demonstrates US leaders preference for China’s totalitarian model. Supporters of free trade say America must bend over for China because they own so much of our debt.  But as Rep. Sherman said, there’s no way for China to collect the debt unless U.S. leaders give it to them.  And unless we stop them, they’ll continue selling U.S. land, resources and infrastructure to China’s Communist government.  Their objective is to give China’s totalitarian regime increasing control over the U.S. economy via trade policies that increase U.S. debt One example is the sale of the Long Beach Naval base to the Chinese government.  The base was one of only two deep water ports on the West coast capable of providing dry dock services to the U.S. fleet.

Free trade is literally trade protection for China’s totalitarian economic model.  The U.S. could destroy China’s totalitarian regime by imposing tariffs on Chinese imports and rebuilding U.S. manufacturing.  Trillions of dollars now going to China would stay in America and grow the domestic economy enough to pay down government debt.  In a capitalist economy based on the rule of law, trade policy should be used to protect Constitutional and economic freedoms from totalitarian ideologies.  Why?  Free trade is funding China’s unprecedented military build up.  Furthermore, Iran and North Korea are being armed and subsidized by China.  The treasonous US-China partnership enables corrupt elites to play both sides of global conflicts, which are used as a pretext to restrict the exercise of unalienable rights.  It’s a classic divide and conquer strategy.

Since the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, industrialized nations have dominated the world economy.  Why?  Because the technology, jobs, and exports generated by an industrial economy are the engine of wealth creation.  America sends Trillions to Communist China to buy their manufactured goods.  Then China uses that money to buy US debt and assets.  US-China trade policies are a back door way to bring China’s command and control economic model to America.  This is not capitalism.  It’s an imminent threat to our economic freedoms, Constitutional Republic, and the unalienable rights it guarantees.  For more info check out the pdf ”Knowledge is Power”.

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