Too Big To Fail, Next Stage
Obvious question: Even assuming you buy the argument “Business X is so big it simply must not be allowed to fail no matter what,” why not simply break Business X into smaller entities, a la Ma Bell and Standard Oil, rather than dig our damned debt hole even further?
Obvious answer: Letting the government seize companies at will (namely, the will to say “I’m doing this for the greater good. Honest and for true”) makes for a more lucrative power grab.
The power to break up large companies is by far the lesser of two evils. Think of the War on Drugs: while I of course oppose all aspects of it, a government claiming merely the right to imprison drug users is preferable to the system we have now, where government claims the right to imprison drug users AND confiscate their worldly possessions. The last thing we need to do is provide more financial incentives for government to be corrupt.
Meanwhile, the national debt is over $11 trillion and President Obama’s proposed budget, with its three-quarters-of-a-trillion dollar deficit, will only make that worse. Of course, fans of the president might say the national debt’s nothing to worry about: as a percentage of America’s annual GDP, we owed far more after World War Two. Despite this (the argument goes), America enjoyed fantastic prosperity in the 1950s, so we needn’t worry now.
True, but today’s situation is different. America in the years following World War two enjoyed an advantage modern America does not: we were the only major industrialized nation whose infrastructure hadn’t been blasted to smithereens during the War. It’s easy to make money when there’s no competition. (America also was a net exporter of oil in those days; rather than depend on OPEC, we could produce all the oil we needed ourselves, and sell some for a profit, too.)
Do you care to make any predictions? Mine are all too nebulous to explain; the only detail I can make out is “We’re screwed.” I can’t describe it more explicitly than that, which is lucky for you because otherwise this post would be NSFW and I wouldn’t’ve remembered to point that out until the very end, as I did here.