Is This Truly How the World Works?

How the World Works?

How the World Works?

Image via Market Oracle

It is important that we understand the flow of power and control through a society. The chart above is a rudimentary attempt to describe a simple hierarchy of economic and political control in the developed world. A lot of important features and players have been left out, and the overall dynamic flow is somewhat misrepresented. But it is a descriptive beginning, and can be modified and built upon.

What is left out, besides Russia, China, other BRICS, and the third world? There is the curious case of Iceland, for one. Iceland has chosen to sever some of its ties with the global banking hierarchy. Other debtor nations may choose the same approach, if they feel able.

Organised crime, black markets, gray markets, and barter can be as much as half or more of a nation’s total economy, but are provided no cubby-hole of their own in the chart. The same criticism applies on an international scale.

There is an odd absence of horizontal interconnections between the discrete power-boxes. Strangely, the connecting links go in only one direction. And equally troubling, the strength of the arrows is not even hinted at.

The chart provides a simple, early overview of how power can flow within and between societies in the modern world. But it fails to incorporate alternative approaches being taken by certain nations. And its lack of dynamic realism and resilience gives it a brittle appearance — subject to easy fracturing and pulverisation, should certain developments take place.

Probably the largest single deficiency of the chart is the suggestion that all power in the developed world flows downward from a “Ruling Omnipotent Kleptocracy” which constitutes a monolithic bloc, united in goals and outlook. The lack of interactive feedback between “government” and the “military-industrial complex,” between “government” and “media,” and between “government” and “banking,” goes beyond simplicity into the naive and conspiratorial.

Sure, the world at any given time is being run by conspiracy. But it is not the particular conspiracy you envision. And it is being run by substantially different conspiracies over time, as alliances are joined, then fall away.

It is crucially important that Dangerous Children have a sense of the flows of power and wealth. But if the model is too naive and simplistic, lending only to fantastical conspiracy theories with no possible approaches to solutions — it needs to be improved.

One should understand that there are only a few single individuals who make a substantial difference in the flow of power and wealth. Most others could disappear overnight without affecting the global dynamic. The same applies to individual laws, policies, companies, government agencies, etc.

The complex inter-relationship is much like the old game of pickup sticks, the nodes of power are interlinked in complex ways. Individual pickup sticks (power nodes) can be removed without disturbing the overall pile — up to a point.

The model suggests a system that is biased toward maintaining the current hierarchy. That is true within limits. But the hierarchy is under constant threat both from within and from without. Internal rivalries threaten the hierarchy, and the state of the outer world likewise threatens the balance.

As deficient as the above model may be, it is better in many ways than the view of the world that most school children learn. It helps a person to cultivate doubt in the good intentions of powerful groups and individuals toward any person or group lower in the hierarchy. That is certainly something that most children should learn — although they should not let that get in their way of setting rational goals and working toward them.

What other things do you see that are left out of the model? What other alternative models would you put forward?

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7 Responses to Is This Truly How the World Works?

  1. Steve Johnson says:

    The problem with the model isn’t the lines – it’s what’s written on the lines which implies what the solutions are.

    If I’m drawing the diagram I start with the faceless, headless progressive conspiracy.

    Lines from that group go to:

    Academia – a bi-directional line labeled “Discovers new reasons to need progressivism” and “Filters candidates for ideological commitment” one way and “Provides secure incomes and sinecures” the other way.

    Global / Multinational corporations – bi-directional line “Imposes progressive thought on it’s serfs”, “Actually implements progressive goals” one way and “Protects loyal corporations from market forces (bailouts and squashing competition)” the other way.

    Politicians – bi-directional line “Provides a harmless popular outlet for opposition” one way and “Provides money and ego gratification” the other way.

    Courts – bi-directional line “Pushes the progressive agenda where possible” one way “Gives (some) real power”, “Provides sinecures” the other way.

    Media – bi-directional line “Provides opportunities for money, fame, and sex” one way “Guards the bounds of discourse to re-enforce the illusion that you have input” the other.

    The military is a bit more complex. They’re only sort of part of the progressive mass. They get used for progressive goals but they also get a huge amount of money from the state. They are the only alternative organization that transmits thought to new members rather than having all new members go through progressive indoc. On the other hand, progressives have been working hard for a very long time at infiltrating and indoctrinating new members with progressivism. Up to about the 1960s or so the military would have been able to actually rule as an alternative to the headless progressive conspiracy but I think by now the progressive rot has spread too far and the military has just been happy to suck up the bribes that the progressive state generates for it.

    An example that illustrates my model and undermines the one above is the mortgage fiasco. The progressive state decided that it wanted lots of Mexicans to move to the United States – for lots of reasons (vote bank, to undermine the existing society, to replace blacks as a criminal class with a more reliable criminal class, more welfare clients to give welfare bureaucrats stuff to do, etc.) but there’s a problem – where are all these millions of people going to live? How do each of the boxes above act?

    Academia – trots out studies about discrimination in mortgage lending which justifies the bureaucracy creating rules requiring lending to Mexicans who are unable to pay back the loans. Developers turn connections and money into houses (bribing the progressive class to be allowed to build). Realtors sell the houses and take a markup. Mortgage brokers package the minority loans to banks who buy them and package them into AAA mortgage bonds. All sorts of investors are required to hold AAA bonds so they buy them in bulk. Banks who don’t get with the program are not allowed to buy other banks and expand (gotta have a good grade on the CRA review to be allowed to acquire!) so all the banks are eventually controlled by the true believers. Eventually the whole thing falls apart and the banks get bailed out (of course) and the progressive class gets to keep its Mexicans.

    • alfin2101 says:

      Some interesting points. You may consider building a visual chart, for purposes of comparison with other charts of similar purpose.

  2. RonG says:

    You forget that the kleptocracy is us. For example, here in Ontario we have subsidized the construction of solar panels by contracts which pay from 3 to 8 times more for electricity than the current retail rate. Did the landowners and farmers not understand that their prospective profits were paid for by their neighbours? Did they not understand that they were being bribed to vote for the Liberal party in a steal from Peter to pay Paul move? Should I not consider such a contract a criminal conspiracy? Every granted monopoly is an attempt to obtain rent from position. We have supply management systems here which guarantee prices to farmers. There is a health system which restricts entrants to keep supply low.
    We have a welfare industry (probably larger in numbers than its ‘customers’) which keeps people poor in order to force the rest of us to pay for the social workers, and subsidy payments, and therapists. Not so coincidentally those same people also support left wing parties who call for increased minimum wages (and thus reduced employment at the low skilled end of the workforce and an increase in clientele). Almost the whole of society is involved in various schemes developed by the more intelligent greedy to scam the less intelligent greedy.
    The point is that we are not forced into these ponzi schemes and vote-buying schemes, nor really are we fooled into them. Madoff’s clients knew there was something crooked going on. They just thought it was a different kind of crooked (insider trading as opposed to ponzi). There are multiple conspiracies, and almost everyone thinks they are in on at least one of them.
    If there is a societal collapse, for a while people will have to earn honest livings as farmers or bandits, but as soon as civilization rises they ALL sooner or later start to scheme again.
    The point is that there is no kleptocracy AND you. There is only the kleptocracy.
    (I think I’m in a bad mood today.)

    • alfin2101 says:

      Yes. Human nature often opts for legally sanctioned larceny. Considering human psychology and the natural heterogeneity of aptitude at all levels of the hierarchy can add considerable depth and perspective.

  3. Matt Musson says:

    You need to add a line about how you always get F@#$%@ when you go through the drive through window!

  4. Zsolt says:

    The modern “democracy” does.

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