Sunday, July 28, 2002

Atrios is absolutely right- this is a piece of unadulterated nonsense, designed solely to shore up the reputation of the people involved (one of the authours, James Glassman, was one of the starry-eyed "New Economy" boosters that helped put us into this mess in the first place, and the other, John Lott, is far out of his field) and to try to keep the faithful happy and protect "their side" as much as anything David Brock dishonestly and slanderously wrote about Anita Hill or Bill Clinton in those pages, and just as likely to be built on a house of lies, deceit, obfuscation and misdirection as Brock revealed his own work had been at the Standard.

For those that didn't follow the link I provided (I wouldn't blame you) it resurrects the "markets hates the government" shibboleth, and attempts to use it as an explanation of why there have been enormous falls in the market over the past few days- blaming it on the proposed or pending legislation on the matter. Other than the simple fact that a lot of these drops have happened when Bush has spoken using the same kind of reflexively pro-business rhetoric that Glassman and Lott are using, the biggest question that appears in my mind is "why don't we just, um, ask some people why they're selling the stocks"?

Glassman and Lott seem to buy into the "market as alien organism" argument, but like any human institution it's ultimately made up of the actions and behavior of large numbers of human beings, and can therefore be understood, at least on a broad level, by understanding those human beings. Therefore, by studying the organs that would shape the opinions of those human beings, by asking representative groups, and by understanding on a more theoretical level how they think, one can at least partially figure out why they're doing what they're doing. In none of these cases, in no conceivable analysis of these cases, does anything like Glassman and Lott's argument come about. When the relentlessly pro-business Economist (an elite opinion-shaper) savages the behavior of American business, why should we believe Glassman and Lott? When public opinion polls (a representative sample of Americans) consistently show that American corporate leadership is less trusted than the nation's drug dealers, pimps, and/or lawyers, why should we believe Glassman and Lott? When pretty much every theory aside from the utterly discredited Glassman's theory of the "Dow 36K" argues that investors are stampeding for the door because they've discovered that they can't trust the numbers in equity markets and therefore want to invest in something where they can, why the hell should we believe this load of farm fresh faeces shovelled by Glassman and Lott?

The answer, of course, is that we shouldn't. That this is yet another attempt by the "Mighty Wurlitzer" of the right to shore up the reputation of their pet president and, more importantly, their dangerous and ludicrous market fundamentalist ideology that has led American markets to disaster just as surely as they led Russian markets to disaster- both at the hands of kleptocratic "businessmen" who are less interested in the functionality and efficiency of capitalism than those aforementioned pushers and pimps. This brand of nonsense is what they're pushing. This type of deliberate spin is what they're pimping. If you don't want to help these people pull off the most brazen attempt at a Big Lie since the "vast right wing conspiracy" began, don't let them get away with it.

No comments:

Post a Comment