Historians say Karl Marx, when not suffering from hemorrhoids and other maladies, would park himself at the British Museum library, sitting there up to ten hours a day as he researched and wrote Das Kapital. Were he still glumly gazing out the library's windows, he would see a London today as hungry as ever for global socialism.
"Abolish money," read the banners of London demonstrators on Wednesday, according to press accounts. Other subtle chants from the mob included: "Capitalism isn't working," "These streets, our streets! These banks, our banks!"
The demonstrators burned a stuffed capitalist doll in effigy, smashed windows at the Royal Bank of Scotland and encouraged apprehensive bankers peering down at the chaos below to "jump." According to Reuters, protestors also marched behind "models of the 'four horsemen of the apocalypse' representing financial crimes, war, climate, and homelessness."
But the rioters needn't get too worked up; it looks like Gordon Brown and Barack Obama already agree with them. Brown's cant theme for the G20 meetings -- "global problems require global solutions -- is chilling in its stupidity and socialist assumptions.
Brown's formulation only makes sense if it is reversed. Every global "solution" hatches a global problem. What threatens the globe is not the environment but environmentalists, not population but population planners, not markets but meddlers in them.
The germ of the global financial sickness was coughed up not by capitalists but by socialists: ideologues in power told banks to give out bad loans in the name of egalitarianism. Obama supported these irresponsible loans as much as anyone else, and while the crisis he and others in Congress helped create quietly spread last summer he was soaking up adulation and applause in Berlin for a blah-blah-blah speech that contained zero insight into coming problems.
Showing off as a "citizen of the world," he informed Europeans that "cars in Boston" are "melting ice caps in the Arctic, shrinking coastlines in the Atlantic, and bringing drought to farms from Kansas to Kenya." If that's the case, maybe nobody should buy them. This week he is talking about lifting people in Paris up from poverty, but last summer Europe and America's "shared destiny" was to "lift the child in Bangladesh from poverty" and help the "blogger in Iran," among other global chores he enumerated.
The Berlin speech is long forgotten, with its "scale of our challenge" giving way to a new one, which is whatever the latest news cycle dictates to Obama.
Global meetings like this week's are called not to solve crises but to create them, drawing upon false ideologies to manufacture a calamity that only massive government intervention could eliminate. Marx and Malthus, master peddlers of this propaganda, still hover over London.
Population is still assumed to be the poverty not the riches of a country -- a Malthusian claim that the Obama administration re-christened this week when a Hillary Clinton adviser told the BBC that the "planet can't support many more people." The Earth is reaching the "limits of sustainability," she said.
Apparently this lie is the Obama administration's idea of sound economic advice to a senile and sterile Europe, a continent whose young workers, save Muslim immigrants, will vanish in the century to come. Europe is losing more population through birth control and abortion than it lost through the Second World War.
The rioters in the streets and the dilettantish ideologues in the boardrooms deserve each other, one group expressing crudely, the other more sedately, the same essential death wish for Europe and the world.
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