Can you believe it! Now, Occupy Wall Street comes to the New York Republican Women’s Club

I mentioned in my previous post, the talk I saw on CSpan delivered by Catherine Crier at the NYRW Club. She is an attractive woman with a razor-sharp non-partisan intelligence –a think-for-herself intelligence that was distinguished by an utter absence of blame!

I’m sure the matrons of the NY Republican Women’s Club are right now holding an emergency meeting to figure out how such a bomb-thrower had been welcomed into their midst in their sofa’d sanctum.

[Here is an excerpt from her blurb for her new book, which was the subject of her talk:

That –writes Catherine Crier– is my rallying cry for the protestors on Wall Street, for the millions of citizens who are unemployed, for the anti-government Tea Partiers and for the nation’s small business owners and entrepreneurs. It is time to expose the imposters and reclaim capitalism for the American people.

Today, Adam Smith’s Wealth of Nations is considered a Bible for capitalism, but when published in 1776, it was a blasphemous challenge to the big business, big government mercantilism in Europe. Smith’s free market theories expanded economic opportunity, promoted competition and encouraged innovation, in large part, by attacking the “concentrated wealth and power” of Britain’s commercial elite.

More than taxation without representation, it was the corrupt British economic system that ignited the American Revolution–just read the entire Declaration of Independence. This
insidious corruption was a major focus of Smith’s economic treatise. Smith’s theories dovetailed beautifully with Thomas Jefferson’s political manifesto, and his writings became the framework for our capitalist philosophy. But as both men learned in their lifetime, theory and practice are rarely in sync.

In a Faustian bargain, our leaders pay homage to Smith’s ideals, but from the outset, they have ignored his model in favor of rapid national expansion and global economic power. What we call capitalism is, in fact, the American version of mercantilism. Ludwig von Mises, a libertarian economist, summed up its benefits rather nicely: “Capitalism gave the world what it needed, a higher standard of living for a growing population.” Measured thusly, the results have been successful for quite some time, but if the goal is the long-term viability of our economic and political democracy, we are in serious trouble.

Just as Jeffersonian democracy operates best on a small scale, Adam Smith believed his self-correcting free markets were ideal for small businesses in a domestic economy. Integrated in their communities, these businesses would be influenced directly by the needs and demands of consumers, and any dangerous or abusive conduct would rarely affect the broader economy. But Smith treated large, powerful companies very differently. He said big business was led by “an order of men…that generally have an interest to deceive and even to oppress the public”, and he referred to powerful corporations (then known as joint stock companies) as “unaccountable sovereigns” that were as dangerous to free markets as tyrannical governments. Unrestrained, they had the power to shape society and governments for their own purposes, and consumers would pay for “all the extraordinary profits” while suffering from “all the extraordinary waste”, the inherent fraud and abuse, that accompanies such immense economic power.”

[LET ME REPEAT THAT LAST –And tell me if it doesn’t exactly describe the sorry state we have reached today!:

” (Adam Smith) said big business was led by “an order of men…that generally have an interest to deceive and even to oppress the public”, and he referred to powerful corporations (then known as joint stock companies) as “unaccountable sovereigns” that were as dangerous to free markets as tyrannical governments.
Unrestrained, they had the power to shape society and governments for their own purposes, and consumers would pay for “all the extraordinary profits” while suffering from “all the extraordinary waste”, the inherent fraud and abuse, that accompanies such immense economic power.”

WHAT a two-by-four! No wonder that matron was disturbed.


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