Posts Tagged ‘Referendum Initiative Citizen RIC’

LIMIT WEALTH ABSOLUTELY II: Because Great Wealth Steers Elite Leadership. Referendums To Fix It All.

December 28, 2018

Extreme WEALTH SELF LEVERAGES THROUGH PURCHASED INFLUENCE. HOW TO FIX IT: Referendum Initiative Citizen, RIC.

The Roman Republic did it! And died from stopping to do it! Athens didn’t need to do it (its wealthiest citizens were not as wealthy as those of Rome; instead wealthy Macedonians killed Athenian democracy). The Republic of Florence didn’t do it, and died from not doing it!

This essay is a deepening, and development, focusing more on the spiritual aspect of oligarchy, and plutocracy, found in my essay “LIMIT WEALTH ABSOLUTELY”

https://patriceayme.wordpress.com/2014/05/31/limit-wealth-absolutely/

Want progress? Want democracy? Let We The PEOPLE VOTE in a referendum TO LIMIT WEALTH ABSOLUTELY! Once the issues are clearly explain and debated, it would pass.Who would object to limit wealth under, say, 100 million dollars?… Except if the work is of public utility (so the likes of Space X, Blue Origin could keep on going on private capital). Another referendum would pass universal healthcare in the USA (no need for debate there, the polls are overwhelmingly in favor)…

The ancient argument against great wealth, familiar to all organized savages, for most of the Neolithic, is that wealth exponentiates: the more of it there is, the easier it is to get more. Even the savage Plains Indians taxed extreme wealth nearly 100%, redistributing thoroughly the thousands of horses a great chief could own.

Another, newer, argument, developed here, is that in modern, massive civilization, wealth controls opinion, hence minds. Wealth can easily purchase the leaders of a Representative Oligarchy system, also known, by a common abuse of language, as “Representative Democracy”.

Corruption is intrinsic to this so-called “Representative Democracy” when wealth is not limited absolutely. Even if one put serious term limits and drastic limits on how much the private sector can influence the public sector. Indeed private actors of immense wealth have many powerful ways to influence (as I will show):

10,000 decide of everything, worldwide: that’s .00001% of the world population… Billionaires are a fifth of that in numbers… So roughly there is more than one very wealthy person for each top leader or influencer, worldwide. This is the crux of the disease attacking us and the biosphere: the leadership feels, think and acts to please wealth. Moreover, as the wealthiest are intrinsically evil (consult Christ!), bad decisions are deliberately taken to further the rule of this oligarchy, because wars, conflicts and disasters distract We The People…

Rome is our great lab study and warning sign:

The Roman Republic is our great predecessor. The Roman Republic made the principle of respecting secular law foremost, as Qin did in China roughly at the same time. This highest principle was a huge success.

Making secular law foremost is such a powerful principle that it makes powerful states: Qin (prolonged by their immediate successors and implementers, the Han) and the Roman Republic built giant empires which can be viewed as lasting to this day (France, thus Western Europe, and the Anglo-Saxon colonies are direct successor regimes of Rome: they use Roman law… refurbished by Constantinople and the Franks, foedi of Rome, and sole inheritors of Roman Imperium.

The Roman Republic collapse was long drawn out: republican elements were taken out, one after the other, for 550 years (let’s say for clarity from 150 BCE until 400 CE, when the Franks were given Roman military imperium over the Germanias and Gallia… by a strange government of Catholic bishops, who, practically then, governed the Roman empire).

Sometimes, under the fascist empire (launched by Augustus), things went back, the other way, towards more Republicanism. In particular under Trajan, with mass scholarships paid by taxes on the rich, or when emperor Caracalla gave universal citizenship. But overall, the Republican institutions decayed under the fascist empire…

The Roman Republic was an enormous success, as a territorial empire: most of the conquests were made under the Republic. If so successful, why did the Republic collapse (dragging the Roman state with it)?

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Sylla, Cicero, Caesar and Augustus accompanied a (plutocratic) revolution they didn’t start and couldn’t control:

The Roman Republic lasted 5 centuries, in full. Then it ran into trouble, as civil wars happened all over. Caesar’s grand nephew, Octavian, aka “Caesar” (he took the name of his uncle and adoptive father, as per tradition), captured the Republic.

When Octavianus/Caesar/Augustus took control, peace got established, by force, and that enforced peace made this Augustus popular enough to stay in power.

“Caesar” made himself “Princeps” (first, principal)… First man in the Senate, somehow, controlling everything, but without the title of king. When he died, nobody knew what to do, and the generalissimo, Tiberius, stayed in seclusion, until the Senate, duly selected by Octavian/Augustus, a set of plutocrats, begged Tiberius to come out, and take some of Augustus’ responsibilities.

Indeed, by Augustus’ death, Rome’s billionaires occupied the entire political landscape… but for the army, which had been the force, and most of the will, behind Octavian/Caesar’s revolution (regressive revolution, revolution nevertheless!)

Augustus, an extremely gifted teenager who led a revolution, got unhinged early on. Plutocracy would drive anybody crazy, that’s its main purpose, in the grand scheme of evolution!

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Roman Republic Lasted Five Centuries In Full, Because of Absolute Limit on Wealth, Vanished When they Did:

In the next four centuries after Augustus found himself “Princeps”, power would balance between billionaires, the plutocrats and the army, until the latter increasingly defanged the Senate (where billionaires ruled), and the plutocrats embraced Christianism, thanks to Constantine’s crazed family, etc.

How did the Roman Republic collapse then? From the switch to a professional army which reverted to old methods of pillage and the like (as Alexander’s men used to). That switch itself was caused by the impoverishment of Rome’s citizen-soldiers, obvious by 150 BCE (and which the Gracchi deplored in eloquent terms, claiming Roman citizen-soldiers had it “worse than wild beasts”, although they were called the “masters of the world”).

That destitution of citizen-soldiers, in turn was caused directly by the rise of the hyper wealthy. The latifundia (giant agri businesses manned by slaves, owned by hyper wealthy Senatorial class) undercut the work product of Roman traditional peasants…. That happened because globalization made it possible immense fortunes which, coming back to Italy bought out indebted citizen-peasants whose work products were undercut by slave work (on the giant latifundia).  

The Gracchi brothers tried to impose the wealth limit laws (existing, but not enforced). They were too late. A generation or two too late (but then of course the Roman army was busy destroying Carthage allies, including Macedonia). They were in turn undercut by the rise of global plutocracy eschewing local taxes and laws. As the hyper wealthy by then could afford private armies of goons, the Gracchi and more than 5,000 of their supporters were assassinated.

So the citizen-soldiers army disappeared… All the more as the invasion of the Teutoni, Cimbri and their allies, saw the near annihilation of the entire Roman army, before the peasantish Marius, helped by the Senatorial Sylla reestablished the situation spectacularly by annihilating the invading German armies.

In any case, out of that mess came professional Roman armies, and they had to be paid… by their commanders in chief, the imperators. When imperators, such as Pompey the Great and Caesar, collided, civil war resulted.

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We Are Engaged In A Similar Decay, With The Similar Causes to Those Which Demolished the Roman Democratic Republic

The whole process of decay of the Roman Republic arose from the economic, and then social destitution of Roman citizen peasant soldiers… the same citizen peasant soldiers who had made Greek city-states so powerful and progressive (with the exception of Sparta, where citizens were just soldiers enslaving the Helots who were the peasants (and occasional soldiers, when Sparta needed massive armies).

Now, of course, we are decaying just the same, and the leading republics, France and the USA switched to professional armies. As happened in Rome, professional armies can make coups and even, revolutions (Octavian had to do what his centurions wanted him to do; one of them went to the Senate, and brandished his sword, adding that, if the Senate didn’t agree to the propositions the army made, that sword would force them to…)

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Same process of wealth concentration in the oligarchy, while the public perishes, as under the decaying Roman Republic: public property collapses, while private holdings (the 1%!) blooms.

Representative Oligarchy, Our Present System, Attracts deliberately idiotic greedsters:

I watched ex-Président of the French Conseil Constitutionel Jean-Louis Debré. That institution, the Conseil Constitutionel, makes sure French laws are in agreement with the Declaration of the Rights of Man of 1789 (not the one of 1793; the UN follows 1789, not 1793; 1793 recognizes the right and duty of peoples to enter insurrection when Rights of Man are gravely oppressed: it was too progressive for the founders of the UN…) The US doesn’t have really a Constitutional Court, although the Supreme Court, SCOTUS, sometimes plays that role, somebody has to…   

Jean-Louis Debré is the son Michel Debré, long a Prime Minister, and brother of Bernard Debré, MD and MP. Also the great grand-son of a Great Rabbin of France. Same family as the famous Fields Medal mathematician , Laurent Schwartz. In other words, a family as connected as one gets, to the point of having a Wikipedia entry with around 50 names! In any case, the ci-devant Debré was on all French TV networks, day after day, to explain, with the bluntest bad faith, that Direct Democracy was the rule of the mob (he used the Greek word invented by the Greek hostage Polybius when he wanted to ingratiate himself with Roman plutocracy, circa 140 BCE… Small world, no? Debré hit just at the same period when civilization took a bad turn, and, as an oligarch, 22 centuries later, stand with the bad guys… Never mind that led straight to Nazism and he is a descendant of Jews…).

So there are those who belong to the oligarchy, and those who accede to it. Several contributors to my site have suggested the obvious: that Obama’s parents were CIA connected (that would explain why he could go through school doing dope and learning very little: the future was his, as a perfect pupett), Now finally, some on the vague left have the courage to say it as it is: the Guardian ran an excellent article saying what I long said: last thing we need is more Obamaism

…Obamaism leads us to believe that we do not need to choose, and that we can actually have it all – as long as we always make sure to line up behind policies that appease the super-wealthy.

It is, in other words, the ideology undergirding the argument recently put forward by former vice-president, Joe Biden, who insisted: “I don’t think 500 billionaires are the reason why we’re in trouble … the folks at the top aren’t bad guys.”

Biden gets it all wrong, and that’s deliberate: 500 billionaires are precisely why we are in trouble. Actually, it’s not 500, but more than 2.200. Some of these billionaires are just creations of the powers that be, for example Abrahamovitch, a Russian sidekick of Putin, now equipped with Israeli citizenship, tight with Beatles legend Sir Paul Mccartney. I mention this, to show even artistic leadership is tight with the plutocracy, not really distinguishable from it. So here now is the beef of this essay:

BILLIONAIRES CAN BUY OUR LEADERS, SPIRITUAL  OR POLITICAL; Here Is The Math:

In the Representative Oligarchy we have now, the wealthiest can steer the few thousands politicians, CEOs, media pundits, influence peddlers, pseudo-intellectuals, university professors, etc. who drive the world.

Their total worth in 2018 is actually 10 trillion. Let’s divide by the number of individuals, like Debré, Biden, who they need to impose plutocracy aka “Representative Democracy” as the world’s best institution: 10,000 billions/10,000 = 10^13/10^4 = 10^8 = one billion.

OK, let’s be more realistic, suppose the 2,200 billionaires spent just 1% of their worth influencing the oligarchic influencers. That gives us a very sustainable, but gigantic 10 million dollars each! In other words, the world’s 2,200 billionaires can flood those 10,000 drivers of the world’s public opinion, with ten million dollars each, while spending a tiny portion of their wealth… And a spending that doesn’t function as a tax, which would go to the state, whereas here it goes to the hearts and minds of the oligarchy itself. The 1% spent influencing the influencers functions as a force multiplier! They recover much more, as when Steve Jobs persuaded Irish politicians to tax Apple just 1% on worldwide revenue, and then probably even more to persuade EU politicians to do nothing effective about this violation of EU law (minimum tax required: 12.5%).

The Guardian nails it, repeating what I said, and saw, from inside, a decade ago already : “It is easy to understand the political utility of this third-way legend: it lets Democrats continue raising gobs of cash from satisfied corporate donors and moguls, and it at least provides voters with more palatable rhetoric than what the Republican party offers. And yet the record of third-way policies over the past few years have made painfully clear that Obamaism’s refusal to choose a side can be a nihilistic choice unto itself.”

The Guardian is too generous. What we are facing here is institutionalized corruption. Past British PM (Major, Blair) made a fortune with jobs provided to them by the billionaire class and their agents. Let alone Al Gore, who made a cool billion and got a Nobel (for talking a storm about the environment while doing nothing about it when he could…)

In France the situation is hilarious: the top intelligentsia, politicos and plutocrats talk, dine and bed each other, sometimes in fancy palaces of distant monarchies. They have ruined the country, but never mind: they thrive, they rule the spiritual waves rolling over the countries. We have seen this before, say in the Ancient Regime (entangled with the Founding Fathers of the USA, nota bene…), or even earlier when Louis XIV was busy devastating France with his ethnocide against the Protestants he was so proud of (and the ensuing world wars…) Some Gilets Jaunes, Yellow Jackets, have concluded that it would best to burn the whole thing down, that entire conspiracy. I concur (are they going to try to get me convicted to inciting to burn down a conspiracy? Right now in France, as in Putinistan, inciting to rebellion sends one to jail. Well, corrupt judges will have to admit that there is one conspiracy, first. According to the 1793 Declaration Des Droits de l’Homme, it is our DUTY to rebel, then…)

So let’s recapitulate. Spending 1% of their wealth each year actually acts as a force multiplier: billionaires make more by spending 1% of their wealth a year, than by not spending it. As observed. A billionaire goes see a president in his presidential palace (happened countless times in the White House and the Palais de l’Elysée), The billionaire makes the president a very remunerative job waits for him when coming out (OK, doesn’t work with billionaire Trump, so Trump is very bad)… if the president consents NOT to tax the company of the billionaire, or his “foundation”, or if the president consents to let his company violate antitrust laws, or environmental laws, or even national security laws (as when French or US drugs have to be all purchased in China; or when “markets” are obtained from technology transfers to… fascist dictatorships, as happened plenty from the USA to Nazi Germany and the USSR).

Or then one takes all top state bankers and economists in Europe, two hundred individuals at most, and one persuades them that, to make real money they have to keep the Euro the way it is, as a  machine to further the wealth of billionaires. And so on…

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How To Stop This? TAX WEALTH ABSOLUTELY! REFERENDUM INITIATIVE CITIZEN!

Indeed suppose wealth was limited at, say 100 millions: then the total wealth of the wealthiest 2,200 would be only 200 billions, and the amount to spend on influencers and “leaders”, only 200,000 a year… Tempting, however, not irresistible.

The RIC: Referendum Initiative Citizenry is another way around, as the wealthiest can’t buy every single one of us.

So let’s re-establish real, direct, Democracy, after a savage 23 centuries interruption, and do both!

In 1911, a referendum in California decided that women should vote: RICs are progressive, because they are anti-oligarchic and oligarchy is always regressive. That was one the first polity to give women such rights, after Pitcairn island in 1838 (!), and Australia (1894-1902). France had to wait until after the Nazis to see this happen. So referenda have the potential to change not just politics, society, but even the neurohormonal balance of the planet.

As it, those 10,000 (mostly) men who rule the planet are not just any men. They are among the greediest, most delusional, most arrogant, shallowest, most self-absorbed guys around: they are selected that way, and they favor their kind… Just as banks lend to the wealthiest, to make them, and themselves, even wealthier.

Examples? Watch Nancy Pelosi, the incoming speaker of the House.  Her and her husband’s fortune maybe as much as $100 million. Not bad for someone who has only worked in politics, starting in 1987. Of course that fortune doesn’t include her five children (long ago, Pelosi was reported to be worth $250 million). The Senior Senator of California does even better: she and her husband are billionaires, a fortune gained in China by the husband, while the wife steered US policy there… These two examples are found within a radius of ten kilometers (and I don’t dislike Nancy, I prefer her, by a very long shot, to her predecessor Republican Ryan)…

It’s like that all over the planet: watch Macron, who went from highest level public finance inspection, to Rothschild Bank, to the finance ministry, to the presidency, all in 15 years, earning a fortune, living in a million dollar apartment, and, guess what, all this fortune earned by devious means, disappeared. And of course everybody knows Trump’s fortune was at the public teat the whole way…

And this is not just France and the USA. In Britain, the third of the large historical so-called democracies, the situation has become grotesque, and hurtful. As The Economist pointed out December 28, 2018, in its lead editorial “The elite that failed” (published after the first version of the present essay): “There are two popular explanations for this mayhem…a catalyst for a long-simmering civil war between successful Britain (which is metropolitan and liberal) and left-behind Britain (which is provincial and conservative). Both explanations have merit. But there is also a third: that the country’s model of leadership is disintegrating. Britain is governed by a self-involved clique that rewards group membership above competence and self-confidence above expertise. This chumocracy has finally met its Waterloo.

Big words, and similar concepts to those I have brandished for more than a decade. If so-called Representative Democracy in Britain, France and the US has turned to “chumocracy”, in other words, oligarchy, for all to see, time for a rethink.

Verily, electoral policy doesn’t select the best, most moral and disinterested, but the exact opposite. Removing, or, at least, controlling them with referenda of We The People will make greed, delusion, arrogance, superficiality, self-absorption less influential in steering our common destiny.

Let’s do it! Limit Wealth Absolutely and modify the constitutions to enable RICs!

As explained a bit in Note 2 below, imposing an absolute wealth limit, and the Will of All through referenda, will have metaphysical consequences: it will steer humanity away from Will to Power of destruction, to Will to Power of loving creation…. 

Patrice Ayme

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Note 1: Most of these iconoclastic views of mine are more than a decade old. Some can be found in the European Tribune:

https://www.eurotrib.com/user/uid:4331/diary

I published there until the editor at the time informed me that some prominent European bankers, men of wealth and taste, insisted that I be banned. So he told me, he was sorry, he had to ban me, because contemporary bankers insisted that my views on 1930s bankers collaborating with the Nazis were outrageous and unsupported by evidence (one of these bankers claimed to me that he did an Internet search, and all the articles he could find on the entire Internet  on the subject were… mine!) In the same few months I was banned from the Daily Kos (a popular leftist site created by the… CIA…) and relegated at the bottom of search engines. Dirty tricks work: a decade later. my obvious views, which should be taught all over the world, are not just considered outlandish, but are fully ignored, as everything was done, not to divulge them to the well-meaning, but ignorant masses…

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Note 2: So I hold that the switch to plutocracy unchained caused by the non-observance of wealth limiting laws, brought the fall of the Roman Republic. The same holds for other Republics, like Firenze, which fell to bankers (the Medici).

The conventional view is much more celebrity bound and shrunk in context: Julius Caesar’s political maneuvers (rather than his generalship), say the common historians, dep in their academic cheese, which had long-lasting effects on Rome and Europe. Caesar’s critical role in going against the Roman Senate by crossing the Rubicon led to the eclipse of the Roman Republic and the emergence of the Roman Empire, the common view holds: Caesar was a bad boy, that’s all.

That (Pluto compatible) view neglects all which happened before, like Lucius Cornelius Sulla’s brutal and weird dictatorship, or Cicero’s dubious, foolhardy and ultimately self-destructive breach of law and process during the “Catiline conspiracy”…

Or, as I said, the view that it is this, or that individual’s fault neglects many major social, fiscal, political factors, such as the rise of an army, a professional army, which depended upon their leaders, the imperators (not the state!) to thrive (when Caesar and Pompey met, once, at the head of their legions, they saluted each other ironically as “Ave, imperator!“… both had the title and function… Clearly who was at fault was not Caesar (born in 100 BCE) but the plutocrats who opposed and killed the Gracchi and their supporters, two generations before Caesar’s birth. Even Marius’ professionalization of the army was a consequence of the unbounded rise of Roman plutocracy. By the way, when the Roman state collapsed in the West (400 CE to around 493 CE, when the Ostrogoths took Ravenna), the plutocracy, which had contributed to that fall in many ways, including rising private armies, stealing all the riches, refusing to pay taxes, and promoting supine, turn-the-other cheek Catholicism, joined the invading barbarian bands with gusto: it is often as if the barbarians gave the Roman plutocracy the tool and excuse they needed to enter the feudal regime…

All this to say this: the devolution of Roman plutocracy over 550 years, until final collapse, show that there are no limits to how low a plutocracy will sink, to promote the brutal, cruel and demented view of humanity which defines it with glee… And why this? Because, Ecce Homo, the Dark Side gives us the neurological passion dozens of millions of years of evolution have honed to the fine art of Homo.