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01 September 2005

The Real Looters

This from Rafaela:


I've been thinking about how everybody is getting so upset about the local looting going on in downtown New Orleans, but nobody seems to contemplate the grand scale looting that goes on Wall Street in the aftermath of this natural disaster.

Oil prices, the hottest ticket on the market, are soaring, but that's not looting, it is free market dynamics and business as usual. Judging by the neglect of the white-collar crime, not all looting is equal, or is it a case of mistaken identity? Well, who cares? Wall Street is making sure that the aftermath of the "most serious natural disaster in recent American history" can be calmly reflected upon in the coming winter months with an old American truth, "the rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer."

Orson Welles as Harry Lime in The Third Man (1949) summed it up neatly:

Martins (The good reporter): Have you ever seen any of your victims?

Harry Lime: You know, I never feel comfortable on these sort of things. Victims? Don't be melodramatic. Tell me. Would you really feel any pity if one of those dots stopped moving forever? If I offered you twenty thousand pounds for every dot that stopped, would you really, old man, tell me to keep my money, or would you calculate how many dots you could afford to spare? Free of income tax, old man. Free of income tax - the only way you can save money nowadays.

2 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw video on CNN of police forcibly removing people that had only been looting food and water... That made me so mad... I don't consider that to be looting when you are taking something to survive. Taking a big screen TV just because you knew you could get away with it is different. I also think there's something fishy with the oil situation... I feel it. Bush/Cheney and their friends at the big oil companies are up to no good (like thats something different).

12:36 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Talk about the big loot! Day 5 has come and gone and oil prices have not been frozen. Too many profits to be lost by George and his buddies?

-gina

9:34 pm  

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