A leader is like a greased pig at a county fair; nobody’s quite able to get a grip on him. All a leader needs for a long rule is nimble feet and a thick layer of grease. These qualities are necessary because the most important quality a leader must have is the ability to destroy the very thing he is praising. The rhetoric praises while the hand destroys.
A good example of the application of this adroit tap dance between tongue and hand is the doctrine of the “free market”. The tongue celebrates the free market as the surest road to a consumptive Valhalla while the hand puts into place the very policies that destroy it.
This is as it must be. The truth is that a truly free market is a liability. It is unstable and unpredictable. Times change, customs change and tastes change. In a free market today’s goose that lays the golden egg is tomorrow’s road kill.
The real downside of a free market is that if an enterprise screws up, it suffers the consequences and goes under. This can put a real damper on economic growth. Only by plowing the market place under and destroying it can businesses grow and bloat until only a handful of multinational corporations remain standing. Only then are they free to make all the stupid decisions they please because they are “too big to fail.”
This is why Wall Street is littered with corpses stretched out on gurneys as Drs. Ben and Tim frantically fill their dead veins with embalming fluid to keep them from rotting before injecting beet juice into their cheeks to maintain the illusion that they are alive and healthy.
Not many people realize this, but under the gentle hand of the market-state we are evolving an economy so centralized that it makes the old Soviet Union look like a Mideast bazaar.
Competition is a threat to society. At its core it is nothing more than commercial anarchy. We need the heft of the multinationals if the market is to remain stable and predictable, even though it never happens that way, but as long as we think some day it will find equilibrium it really doesn’t matter what it does. Illusion trumps reality any day.
Order and predictability are the rewards of a controlled market-state economy, one we nurture even as we stand firmly by the doctrine of the free market as the purest expression of democracy and freedom.