Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Bureaucratic Goals

As I noted earlier, the current stage of social evolution is where the establishment consists of bureaucrats: the Democrats represent government bureaucrats and the Republicans represent corporate bureaucrats. With regard to the economic system, the Republicans in the last days of the Bush administration used the near-collapse of the system to push through a 700-billion-dollar government welfare payment to the banks, which the senior bureaucrats used to pay bonuses and generally maintain their lifestyle.

Once the Obama administration came in the Republicans objected to making welfare payments to anyone except their corporate bureaucrats, and especially people (like me) who live on small government pensions and unemployment dole.

Barack Hussein Obama himself had been conned into believing that the goals of most Americans included returning the economic system to the status quo, with some slight tinkering that would increase its stability and get more equality in things like health care. That was not the case with the upper levels of the corporate bureaucracy.

Obama also misunderstood the tactics of the bureaucrats who were on his side, the government bureaucrats that were represented by Democrats. These democrats are limited in direct salary payments while they are in office, so they try to make up for it by increasing their power (through laws and regulations), and by lobbying (opening the loopholes) when they are out of power. Obama, who made his wealth by writing books, didn't understand the use of lobbying as an out-of-power income source by his senior followers, and was hoist by his own petard.

Obama thought he could trust his political allies because his experience as a community organizer allowed him to think in terms of actions that benefit "ordinary people" (i.e., the working and lower middle class); while his allies think of actions that will manipulate ordinary citizens into helping them fulfill their goals of personal ambition.

This doesn't mean that Obama can't save us from ourselves even using imperfect colleagues. They need him to provide the charisma that keeps them in their jobs, so they will follow his lead to a certain extent. But when he has finished his one or two terms both the corporate and government bureaucrats will go back to their normal behavior of looting the public treasury for their own benefit.

In earlier days, even in the twentieth century, this wasn't so terrible because the government bureaucrats kept anything from happening quickly and the corporate bureaucrats stole only a small fraction of the gross national product (GNP). The advent of computers, however, has made it possible for pyramid and Ponzi schemes to be worked so fast that they can collapse the economy in a matter of weeks; long before any government bureaucrat could do anything about it, or even be sure such a scheme was in progress. We can, therefore, reasonably expect that the global economy will collapse a matter of weeks after the end of the Obama dynasty (assuming Obama can find a successor).

On the other hand, Barack Hussein Obama is quite intelligent, and it is possible that he will not only learn how the system works, but figure out how to use the "Bully Pulpit" to allow him to represent those of us who are not in the bureaucracy or, if we are employed by bureaucrats, to think in our own interest and not as our bosses want. Obama became President long before anyone expected that of a member of a minority, so maybe he can break the bureaucratic cage the same way he broke the glass ceiling.

In any case we can wish him luck.

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