by Karl Denninger, Market Ticker:
How do you know when a nation is about to collapse?
It becomes so lawless that hiding the abuses is no longer necessary. They’re undertaken in full daylight, boldly, by those in charge. And, usually, they start to involve victimizing kids — not so much because it’s easier (it’s plenty easy to victimize adults when nobody goes to prison and you’ve turned every man into a eunuch on top of it) but because you start to run out of adults to vicimize so all that’s left is kids.
The poster child for this is of course Zuckerberg and Facebook, which the founding President of has admitted uses psychological trickery to addict people to the site, and now has chosen to abuse children. You’d think that when a business starts peddling the equivalent of drugs to kids that the cops would show up, haul everyone involved off in chains and destroy the company involved but you’d be wrong — Facebook’s stock closed at $172 yesterday, for a market cap of $502 billion. Every single penny of that should be forfeit right here, right now.
Oh, speaking of abusing children, if you’re a sorta little guy you might get arrested for prostituting kids. Maybe. It seems that being a State Senator is not far enough up the power ladder to evade going to jail. I hope that guy has a nice supply of Vasoline, as I have been told prison inmates just loooove those who like to screw kids. Now about Zucker****er; yeah, I know, it’s not sex — just totally buttraping the future of said kids by diddling their minds so it doesn’t count…. right?
It’s just Facebook you say, or some State Senator? Uh, no. How about Google and Youtube? Oh by the way, as Youtube “allegedly” tries to “clean this up” I can tell you with certainty that they are de-monetizing videos that absolutely are family-friendly. How do I know? They flagged one of my daughter’s — which featured…… wait for it…… a hike up a hill with her pussy…… CAT. There was utterly nothing objectionable in any way, shape or form in that video, but since she was out of town and I noted the lack of ads I filed the protest for her. They turned it back on. Instead of looking before killing it in the first place, of course, they just used a computer to do it, you see, because 30 seconds of actual looking would have disclosed….. a cat and a hike. It also would have meant Google would have made a bit less money to actually employ people, and, well, we can’t have that. Jobs? Forget about it.
Then there’s Chicago and Goldman’s latest fraud, and what a doozey that one is. The City, which incidentally is basically bankrupt and has insane pension liabilities, created a “new” corporation, assigned it alleged “preference” for sales tax revenues, and then had it issue bonds in order to game the ratings. The result? A “AAA” rated bond issue for a bankrupt municipality. May I remind you that if you tried this you’d be tossed in prison for 30 years for fraud and the entire set of transactions would be unwound because you cannot structure your finances to avoid paying creditors after the event that gives rise to the liability has happened. For example, you cannot get into a car accident where you’re at fault and then put your assets in a trust to avoid losing them in the ensuing lawsuit.
Yet that’s exactly what Chicago did with Goldman’s help to both set it up and run the bond offering. This is blatant and outrageous fraud upon every single previous creditor, and if you or I tried it not only would the transaction be unwound we’d be indicted on top of it. Well? Where are the handcuffs on Rahm and why isn’t Goldman shut down right here and now as a criminal enterprise with Mr. God’s Work being led off in cuffs?
Then you have the grand-daddy of all, which is quite-clearly outlined here — not that if you’ve read my column you need another example. It deals with the medical scam. Just a few miles south having your appendix removed is 1/10th of the cost of having it done here. The difference? Blatant and lawless behavior that violates 100+ year old anti-trust law. This law is not just civil in nature either; it is a felony to even attempt to monopolize trade or commerce.
May I remind you that this body of law (15 USC Chapter 1, Sections 1 and 2) do not require that prices go up, although in the case of medical care of all sorts they sure as hell have — by a factor of 10 or more. The reason the law was written to not require pricing to increase is that it is extremely common for monopolists to cross-subsidize — that is, screw someone else so you think you’re getting a “deal”. It’s illegal irrespective of price rises (or not) for the precise reason that the people who wrote the law at the time were well-aware that it is trivial for large, powerful corporations to cost-shift and thus hide what they’re doing, making it appear that you’re getting a reasonable deal when in fact they’re jacking people up the cornhole left, right and center.
Steve Forbes recently wrote on this but he has no sack either for he has refused to use the “F” word — consistently and over decades. See, people don’t want to use the “F” word (no, not ****, felony) because if the American public was to actually start reading said law, and realized that the first two sections consisted of all of a couple of paragraphs and nowhere is there a requirement that prices go up (never mind that they sure as hell have in the medical field) they might pick up pitchforks and torches and demand that people start going to prison right now “or else.”
I mean it’s not like hospital administrators (who provide zero care to patients) have risen in count by over 3,000% wh
ile doctors have risen by something like 100% from 1970 to today, or medical costs have gone up 800% while wages have risen 16%. Oh wait…..
People have told me that I’m being completely unrealistic when I point out that fixing this would cause medical costs to drop by 80% or more, making “insurance” completely unnecessary for 95% of all things medical and the cost of insurance for the remaining 5% about as expensive on an annual basis as one nice night out on the town. In other words with the exception of the truly destitute nobody would need any help at all from government or anywhere else.
Don’t tell me that this outcome is impossible either; if you’re older than 45 or so your parents did exactly that when you were a child. Were you stoned when you were six or are you intentionally refusing to face facts? I remember the doctor’s office — exactly where the building was, the waiting room (divided into two sections; one for well kids there for routine things, the other for sick kids — an attempt to avoid getting the well kids sick!), the front desk (where you paid, natch) and the little exam rooms. I also remember my very-much middle class mother writing a check for the modest cost incurred. There were no insurance cards and no angst about a visit to the doctor, if you really needed one. You called, you showed up, you had whatever you needed attended to taken care of, you wrote a check and left.
That’s because it didn’t bankrupt you.
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