Friday, May 08, 2009

A Definition of Oligarchy

A society whose banks are too big to fail.

NOTE: This JEC session is where it came up. In fact, if you listen even half-way carefully from 02:21:15 to 02:24:30, what you will have heard is the case being made, before a joint committee of the United States Congress, by some very reputable persons, that America is a banana republic. That's the light-hearted way of putting it. Stiglitz says he would consider the private-public partnership program a "scam" if some third-world country had proposed it. Taken in conjunction with Brad Miller's summary of Johnson's Atlantic article—an oligarchy controlls the government and "until you end the power of the oligarchy..."—this is very disturbing, or at least should be. I know a lot of people are using the word "fascism" very carelessly these days. But I don't see how much more of an argument you need to at least raise the issue.

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