cj#815> reader comments re/ strategic thinking


Richard Moore

Date: Wed, 12 Aug 1998 19:06:38 -0400
From: Steve Kurtz <•••@••.•••>
To: •••@••.•••
Subject: Re: cj#814> report from a cj reader; strategic thinking

Greetings Richard & all,

Although I agree with most of the perceptions and interpretations that both
x and Richard delineated, there is one area which I think is being
misunderstood. This is, not surprisingly, most likely influenced by the
superrich via media control. Various social critics pick up the media
fiction, and a myth is born and perpetuated.

The myth I'm referring to is that the speculators in currency markets have
caused and can continue to cause the collapse of national economies and
currency exchange rates (which are relative valuations). Powerful
governments, the world's 500 richest families, and corruptable leaders in
developing countries can, in combination *cause* the aforementioned
breakdowns; but they are by & large not the speculators, who number in the
multi-thousands. The power elite don't need to gamble; they merely steal!

I wrote a 2 page paper on this topic which is available on two (soon 3)
radically different websites. Here is the URL for The Canadian Assoc for
the Club of Rome site: (other 2 are Precious Metal & Distance Education

        (To see the full site, erase " /kurtz.html)

The mega-rich (and powerful) are thrilled that activists blame and persue
speculators; it diverts the flak from themselves! One teaser to stimulate
you to read the paper: currency trading is a zero sum game, that is, no
wealth is created or destroyed; it merely changes hands. And both parties
to a transaction are speculators - one wins what the other loses (less a
small% which is the commission/mark-up to the game operator).

Steven B. Kurtz
Fitzwilliam NH
(if you can't access the web, email me & I'll fwd you an electronic copy)

Date: Wed, 12 Aug 1998
To: •••@••.•••
From: Mark Douglas Whitaker <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cj#814> report from a cj reader; strategic thinking

 >This transition from debtor to serf is a profound change of relationship,
>and of role.  In it the debtor loses his freedom; he is no longer a
 >voluntary participant in a transaction, but has become subject to another's
  >control.  The creditor becomes a master-of-others instead of a banker.

        I feel it is more complex than a 'blame the banker' approach,
however cathartic that is. On this macro level of analysis, I feel we are
looking at the whole organizational system as stratifying its relations,
based on both banker interests and the interests of the individual
consumer/shopper/whatever. Over time, the whole society stratifies in this
manner I would argue, based on a combination of factors like individual
strategic choice over time for all parties, as well as an increasingly and
differentially experienced gamut of strategic choices which is influenced by
this organizational stratification.

         I have posed this in a previous message, concerning the 'feudal'
characteristics of capitalism. My point was that the terminology with which
we comprehend popularly the notion of 'capitalism' was historically built on
an ideological duality against a constructed 'feudal past-' that capitalism
would be something different.

         It is a terminology to discuss political economy in comparative
perspective (instead of  'evolutionary' approaches, which faded out in the
1970's) which will simultaneously highlight problematic areas of our regimes
of 'development' as well as provide a means to develop what I call a
'sustainable politics' based on the comparative knowledge.


Mark Whitaker
University of Wisconsin-Madison

Date: Thu, 13 Aug 1998 13:35:19 -0500
To: •••@••.•••
From: Konopak <•••@••.•••>
Subject: Re: cj#814> report from a cj reader; strategic thinking

By the same token as was writ elsewhere regarding strategic thinking, I was
recently on a long, solitary auto journey during which I listened to a lot
of radio and had ample opportunity to reflect upon the viscissitudes of
"life in the USA approaching the _fin d'epoque_".

Between the endless array of distractions occasioned by the
Clint-dong/Lewinsky "business" (in the vaudevillian sense) there were a
number of stories about the plan to enact legislation to protect users of
Health Maintenance Organizations and other so-called "managed care"
initiatives. I was trying to figure it out when I happened upon the
following formulation of events and decisions.
    1. The notion of so-called "managed care" (in the US, at least)
requires that it be run by the private sector as a for-profit institution.
    2. So-called "managed care" has been established to forestall and eliminate
the possibility of "single-payer" (wrongly called "socialized") systems.
    3. To be effective as (another obscenely) profitable business
enterprise, so-called "managed care" requires that those whose care is
managed either remain healthy or die quickly, or that in some other way the
disbursements for their care not be counted against the revenues received.

And the solution (for the strategic interests of obscene profit) is simple:
devise a system whereby all disbursements for patient care may be taken as
tax-deductions.  This will shortly I am sure be realized through
legislation. The genius of this system (for the interests of obscene
profitability) is that, in effect, it creates a single-payer system, while
profits accrue in private hands. It's simple and brilliant, and I am
morally certain it will become a reality by the end of the Clint-dong/Gore
regime. Follow the money!



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