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July 6, 2021 | Power, Greed and Status Are Corrupting the U.S. Elite

Is an American author of books and articles on economic and financial subjects. He is the founder and president of Agora Publishing, and author of the daily financial column, Diary of a Rogue Economist.

YOUGHAL, IRELAND – The Sunday papers raised the alarm about “Global Climate Change.” Apparently, people are sweltering almost everywhere – from Dubai to Canada.

The newspapers showed frightening maps, with most of the Northern Hemisphere – like Hell itself – colored bright red. Some columnists claimed that large parts of the Earth could soon be uninhabitable if action weren’t taken.

Others were confident that we could turn down the world’s thermostat, if we just put our minds to it; that is, if we got behind the elite’s program for climate regulation.

“The Ecological and Solidarity Transition,” the French call it. “The Green New Deal,” is how they’re describing it in the U.S.

Liberation

But here in Ireland, it’s hard to get too worked up about the heat.

July the 4th was much like every other summer day – with the temperature in the 60s and showers that made it seem even cooler. On the apocalypse maps, Ireland was light green.

Almost every family in Ireland has relatives – often very distant – in America. The 4th of July holiday is well known.

Even our minister mentioned it in his sermon at mass on Sunday.

“This is America’s Independence Day,” he began, “the day they celebrate their liberation from Britain. And, of course, we got the message on this side of the Atlantic, too, that we could liberate Ireland from Britain. It took another 146 years.

“And yes, we can liberate ourselves from a government. We can change the people who rule us – either by force of arms or simply by voting for a different candidate.

“But we can’t change who we are… or the fundamental rules by which we live. Those rules were never voted on… and never fought over. You can deny them. You can ignore them. But you can’t liberate yourself from them. They are part of who we are… and what we are.”

You can ignore the laws of economics, he might have added. But you can’t ignore the consequences of ignoring them.

You can “print” all the money you want, for example. You can manipulate prices. You can run trillion-dollar deficits. You can pay people for not working… and keep zombie businesses alive with “stimmy” money.

Elite Thinking

The elite of a society are supposed to think about these things. About the future. About consequences. About the lessons of the past. About the electric bill, when you leave the lights on… and about what happens when you give a trucker the finger or spend all your money on lottery tickets.

The proles may exercise their muscles… toting that barge and lifting that bale… But the 10% should use their brains. They should be rational… aware of history.

They are supposed to lead, not follow. They are supposed to remember dangers and help the society avoid them. They should calm the mob… and throw cold water on irrational exuberance.

They are supposed to do good, not just do well for themselves. They are supposed to think about consequences.

Abuse of Power

What amazes us is how little real thinking the thinkers do.

In ancient Ireland, the Brehon Law established that there were five classes of people.

The elites were kings and nobles, but included free people with property… and the thinkers.

The “ollambh,” or ollave, were the highest class of thinkers… the “professors.”

A “shanachie”’ was a professor of history. He was supposed to know consequences… and make sure the kings remembered them, too.

Patrick Weston Joyce’s A Smaller Social History of Ancient Ireland, explains:

As a Shanachie or Historian, the ollave was understood to be specially learned in History, Chronology, Antiquities, and Genealogies of Ireland… He should know by heart 350 Historical and Romantic Stories. He was supposed to know the prerogatives, rights, duties, restrictions, tributes, etc. of the king of Ireland and of the provincial kings. As a learned man, he was expected to answer reasonable questions and explain difficulties. Once admitted to the coveted ranks, the guerdon was splendid; for he was highly honoured, had many privileges and received princely rewards and presents.

Mr. Joyce then seems to have described the arc of life for all elites…

But as might be expected, they often abused their position and privileges by unreasonable demands, so that many of them, while admired for their learning, came to be feared and hated for their arrogance.

Power Corrupts

What every group wants is more power… more status… and more wealth.

An elite has power. Left unchecked, power corrupts it. It becomes arrogant. Then, it is very hard to resist using the government to get what it wants.

That is the story, grosso modo, that we follow every day – in which America’s elite, funded by fake money, has become corrupt, incompetent, and self-serving.

Instead of helping us remember the lessons of the past, it wants us to forget… and to believe that the ancient laws no longer apply.

The elite has stopped thinking, in other words.

More proof tomorrow…

Regards,

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Bill

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July 6th, 2021

Posted In: Bill Bonner's Diary

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