Daily Hampshire Gazette - Established 1786
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Shrapnel flies from ‘disaster capitalism’

To the editor:

Here we are, folks, speeding toward the winter solstice and Christmas. A time of great joy and renewal. And just beyond, we are told, a fiscal cliff.

This is “disaster capitalism” at play. And a sinister game it is.

Imagine small groups of seemingly responsible adults sitting around in think tanks conjuring up widespread social crises so that in the ensuing confusion they can activate the political mechanisms in place to push harsh austerity measures upon the populace, eradicating the social safety nets that make for a cohesive social fabric.

That’s what these neo-conservatives have done all across South America, are doing now in Greece and Spain and would very much like to do here. When a small, elite group has that much wealth and power, nothing looks quite so good as a spanking-new banana republic. The ideals of democracy are looked upon with scorn. What these elites long for is a cosy little gated community with concertina wire to keep the rabble out while they devour their caviar.

The casino culture is upon us. The Christian admonition that looking out for one another is the road to heaven is a quaint, bygone fairy tale. It’s dog-eat-dog. Already I can see the big, neon signs there at the entrance to Mountain Park in Holyoke, welcoming busloads of suckers to the glistening casino.

And then — increased desperation, crime, jails, misery.

Upon this foundation of sand do we build the new economy.

Ralph J. Dolan

Haydenville

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