An Economy with Integrity

In an interview recently, on NPR, I heard fragments of interviews of Wall Street Brokers at a bar they frequent.
They were distressed that the current administration was considering raising their taxes. They were adamantly opposed to President Obama. The bailout they got from him (and his team of ex-Wall Street Players)? It was deserved. They are smarter than everyone else and deserve everything they can get.

Reflecting on that, it dawned on me that this is the 21st Century incarnation of pirates and robber barons.
The Somali pirates that appear occasionally in the news are petty in comparison. They only get away with several millions of dollars in ransom. And that is covered by insurance.

Simply, greed, especially institutionalized greed, is not sustainable. It sucks the life out of the system. Reflecting on nature or the living earth, we find that healthy systems are always balanced and reciprocal.

To establish credibility and integrity to the economy, the pirates and robbers must be prosecuted.

When they are imprisoned, however, we should release simple drug offenders so that they are not corrupted by the brokers.


Yesterday’s Economy

We can no more restore yesterday’s economy than we can reprocess yesterday’s lunch.

That economy, which led us to be “first in the world,” was based upon militarism, consumerism and greed. In today’s world, wrought by our past behavior, this is a diet that is unsustainable. Even if our politicians, historians, economists, stock brokers and statisticians can’t see it, the little planet we live on and share with a myriad of other species, provides all the resources our vanities prod us to gobble up and waste.

Unbelievably, people habituated to self aggrandizement through amassing buckets of money and power don’t seem to be able to comprehend that the consumption and greed party is over.

The attempts to restore the “good life” and comforting middle class habits are leading only to more frustration, distress and unrest. Our economy and quality of life are plummeting, to less than “middle world” economies. There is no BACK. And the comparisons with “the great depression” no longer work because we had only begun to over exploit Earth’s limited resources.

Is it already too late? Even our kings and multibillionaires are still human animals, part of the web of life integral to Earth. Our life support systems are shutting down. Unless we quickly become conscious and mature as a species, more of our oceans will die, more of our soil will become impotent.

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