William Black writes of the five fatal flaws of finance (read the whole thing, his analysis is excellent and should enrage and terrify you):
The financial sector is a tool to help those that make real tools, not an end in itself. But five fatal flaws in the financial sector's current structure have created a monster that drains the real economy, promotes fraud and corruption, threatens democracy, and causes recurrent, intensifying crises.Robert Creamer adds four points in another outstanding piece:
- The financial sector harms the real economy.
- The financial sector produces recurrent, intensifying economic crises here and abroad.
- The financial sector's predation is so extraordinary that it now drives the upper one percent of our nation's income distribution and has driven much of the increase in our grotesque income inequality.
- The financial sector's predation and its leading role in committing and aiding and abetting accounting control fraud combine to:
- Corrupt financial elites and professionals, and
- Spur a rise in Social Darwinism in an attempt to justify the elites' power and wealth.
- The CEOs of the largest financial firms are so powerful that they pose a critical risk to the financial sector, the real economy, and our democracy.
- History has shown that financial markets cannot accomplish their ostensible goal of allocating risk and directing capital to their highest and best uses unless they function within the context of very strict rules.
- Much of the financial sector does not produce anything.
- Left to their own devices, financial speculators often kill off productive enterprises through leveraged buyouts and private equity plays.
- The bigger the financial sector gets, the more power it has to hold the entire economy ransom for huge bailouts when their speculative bubbles collapse.