Billions to rescue what?

September 20, 2008

As I write this column the newspapers report that United States, Canadian, European and Japanese banks have combined to inject an extra US$180 billion (A$225 billion) into global financial markets. It is the latest desperate measure to try to stem the year-old global financial crisis commonly — and misleadingly — labelled the US subprime mortgage crisis.

This latest mega-lifeline to a degenerate capitalist system follows the George Bush administration's recent $200 billion nationalisation of Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae, the giant mortgage insurers who together hold half of all mortgages in the US, and the $85 million buyout of giant US insurance company American International Group.

Bush, the champion of privatisation — and enemy of the nationalisations being carried out by Hugo Chavez in Venezuela — didn't blink at nationalising Freddie and Fannie to save the hides of capitalist bankers. His real position on privatisation is clear: privatise profits, nationalise losses.

Hundreds of billions of dollars were found overnight to bail out a system that has extracted obscenely huge profits from a string of huge speculation bubbles. Yet, a few months before, they found it impossible to raise the mere $500 million that the United Nation's World Food Program sought to address the "food gap" created by soaring food and fuel costs.

More than 25,000 people dying from hunger or a related illness every day across the world, including one child dying every five seconds, could not inspire an immediate response. But screaming Wall Street suits clearly made world governments and banks jump.

Where is this bailout money coming from? The same public that was cheated and exploited by these financial gangsters. Why? So that the system can stabilise and then start the whole process all over again later.

In short, ordinary folk are forced to pay so that they can keep on screwing us and wreck the global environment in the process!

This the is blunt truth and any "news" publications that omit to mention this amid all the hand-wringing should be branded liars. Green Left Weekly is not afraid to tell the truth and champion the building of a people's movement powerful enough to replace this system with one based on cooperation and ecological sustainability.

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