Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Stocking Up on Intellectual Ammunition for the Eating of the Rich

The coming Revolutionaries and Populists will need some sort of emotional "hook" to justify and underpin their intial campaigns for power. Once in power, Might Makes Right, but getting there requires buy-in from an angry and fearful multitude. Showing the masses that a high-powered elite "controls" all financial flows and is responsible for collapsing the world economic system would be an effective meme, one would think, in a world filled with formerly middle class men and women who believed what they were told by the financial mass media, played by the rules and find themselves destitute from following the advice.

Study Says World's Stocks Controlled by Select Few
Companies from US, UK and Australia have the most concentrated financial power
Aug 25, 2009
By Lauren Schenkman
Inside Science News Service

WASHINGTON -- A recent analysis of the 2007 financial markets of 48 countries has revealed that the world's finances are in the hands of just a few mutual funds, banks, and corporations. This is the first clear picture of the global concentration of financial power, and point out the worldwide financial system's vulnerability as it stood on the brink of the current economic crisis.

A pair of physicists at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich did a physics-based analysis of the world economy as it looked in early 2007. Stefano Battiston and James Glattfelder extracted the information from the tangled yarn that links 24,877 stocks and 106,141 shareholding entities in 48 countries, revealing what they called the "backbone" of each country's financial market. These backbones represented the owners of 80 percent of a country's market capital, yet consisted of remarkably few shareholders...

h/t Matt Savinar at Life After the Oil Crash

Just as an aside, this sounds very much like one of the plot lines from Robert Heinlein's outstanding novel "Friday" - which by the way, is well worth reading as we get ready for the Great Collapse.

Stories and research like this are digging the new riverbeds down which the anger and negative mood can travel. If you are very wealthy you best have plans and means to camouflage yourself, your core assets and be ready and willing to be nimble. That high-pitched grinding sound you hear are the sharpening of the long knives and that smell in the air is the cordite of the ammunition being laid up by a boiling mass of increasingly resentful populace. If you are planning on leading a coup or heading up an upstart political movement, start getting systematic in how you collect your data that will be used in your campaigns, with particular attention paid to showing how networks of influence might work (Muckety is a fantastic example of one such tool and I'm sure we'll see such tools taken to new heights of innovation).

Back in the Bubble Era, you could put a few cocktails into a Wall Street Big Shot and get to hear him (or occasionally her) opine about how the "masses are asses." Well, an ass is not always docile and that kick can kill...

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