Monday, March 9, 2009

Sinister Weekly - Week of March 1 - 8

It seems like the answer to all of our economic problems is the same: nationalize it.

The car industry is tanking. If it fails, millions of jobs will be lost. We have two possible solutions: 1) let it fail and just eat the economic damage. 2) nationalize GM, fire the management, restructure the company to produce plug-in hybrids and, you know, decent cars that don't break, and then re-sell it back to the private sector. Option 2 is cheaper and less painful in the long run - by a long shot.

The banking industry is tanking. Nationalize the big failing banks, lump them together into one big National Bank, force them to start lending again, and use that power to jump start the economy like a big set of economic jumper cables. Voila. Cheaper than just handing them money and watching it disappear.

The health care system is in crisis. Private insurance is a tangled web with gaps as wide as the Grand Canyon, and other mixed metaphors. The solution is to nationalize it. Expand Medicare to cover everyone - one payer, one plan, take the cost off of businesses and free them up to start hiring and compete with foreign companies who already have the freedom of not having to shoulder their employees' health benefits.

Am I preaching "European welfare state socialism," whatever that means? Yes, probably. So what? It works there - really well, in fact. I posted about this last year.

Look, laissez faire capitalism is a massive, giant, huge, festering failure, and it's time for us to face up to that fact. The only solution is to use the power of government to fill in the gaps, shore up the faltering foundations of the system, and pray to God that it's not too late to avoid total collapse.

Though, to be honest, part of me is rooting for the total collapse of capitalism. Though it's not a very nice part.