Banks go bust from time to time; that is part of the everyday life of citizen societies and their way of doing their economy, their market economy. Unlike the bankruptcies of other companies, there is always a great deal of excitement about the threat of bank failures spreading to crises that could ruin entire national market economies or even more. Then there are always debates about how it could have happened again, and concerns that such crises could call into question the functioning in the vaunted market economies. Banking crises reveal all kinds of interesting things about what drives market economies and their banks in their innermost being and could also lead to the question of whether the worries about their continued existence are really well-founded or whether it would not be better to ask oneself whether the world is still ticking correctly if it is worried about the continued existence of such an economic system, if one asks oneself what banking crises reveal about the banking system and about the market economy in general.
In banking crises, mountains of wealth are destroyed in dimensions that seem so unreal because they contrast with the dimensions of wealth with which normal people make their living in such a way that the wildest multiplications are not sufficient to halfway measure these dimensions. Apart from the very big banking crises, when they ruin the entire economy of a country, the normal citizen does not notice much of these banking crises, because his wealth, which lies in these banks, is so puny that it simply does not count in what makes up the wealth of banks and what is then destroyed in such crises. Provided, as in the case of the current banking crises, a bank that goes bankrupt is taken over by another bank, otherwise the money of those who need the money to live disappears along with the mountains of money of the bank customers for whom the banks are there. Destroyed in bank crises is the wealth of people, on whose wealth it depends in these societies and that is so gigantic that its destruction the wealth balances of these people lets shrink mightily, the wealth of these people however not really tangent, not to mention that this wealth destruction would be a problem for the living conditions of these rich people. This wealth is not a means to an end, i.e. a means to get the useful wealth needed to live, this money-wealth, more precisely its increase, is the whole purpose not only of the rich, but the purpose that all life and the production of all the useful wealth in these societies serves only for this purpose. And it is the banks, the finance capital, which with the radical subordination of all economic activities of all other departments of productive and of trade capital as well as all social activities of citizens under this service for this wealth indifferent to any usefulness, it is the banks which economically enforce this economic programmatic of citizen societies under the direction of the respective national banks in all areas of the life of their citizens.
And this means something: the use of all the useful wealth, which these societies produce indeed, which are not used for the increase of the monetary values invested in it, but are used for the service of human needs, are in this society an unproductive destruction of wealth. The fact that this society, which is oriented to the multiplication of monetary wealth, nevertheless serves needs for useful things, is, from the point of view of what counts in this society, the growth of monetary wealth, an unavoidable concession to the fact that without this service of needs of humans no life of citizens is possible. How much in these societies goes into consumption, i.e. into a deduction from the productive, i.e. money-increasing wealth, is the content of the elementary conflict that such societies fight out with themselves, and the banks are in these conflicts between the wealth for useful purposes of citizens and that for the accumulation of wealth freed from any usefulness, the institutionalized interest to impose the purposes of abstract wealth on the citizen societies with their economic means of blackmail. Anyone who has ever taken out a bank loan knows how this works. The different dimensions of poverty document this negative point of view towards the satisfaction of needs of this way of life of citizen societies directed towards the multiplication of abstract wealth, abstract because negating what the usefulness of this wealth means for the citizens lives who serve wither lives this negating wealth. The fact that in the destruction of the wealth of the wealth accumulators, the wealth of those who spend it on food, which is also on the banks, the ruin of banks usually does not affect, because it is simply too puny, so already thanks to its size do not invest it in the growth of wealth, a growth on which everything in this economy depends, but just spend it on food, that does not mean that these two kinds of wealth, the wealth for the growth of wealth and the one for the subsistence of the normal citizens of these civil societies, have nothing to do with each other. On the contrary, on this difference depends, for both sorts of wealth everything that matters to them, for the accumulation of wealth for the purpose of accumulation its accumulation, for the wealth for the denial of food the sheer existence of this sort of the other low wealth owners, because their wealth always maneuvers at the limit of their existence as citizens. The fact that with all the production of useful wealth this usefulness in this way is of very limited importance can be seen also from the fact that with the destruction of this wealth in monetary values of the rich, in contrast to the destruction of monetary wealth of the ordinary citizens, with whom every cent less in their bank accounts leads to a restriction of useful wealth, as a rule not only does not lead to reductions of useful wealth. This is not because that wealth is so gigantically large that whatever monetary wealth is then cut, there is still enough left over to provide these people with the useful things in life. The loss of this monetary wealth of the rich, therefore, does not mean a loss of useful wealth, because their wealth does anyway not represent useful wealth at all. What is accumulated and destroyed in the case of banking crises are monetary values of a completely different nature than those monetary values of ordinary citizens, which in their hands represent monetary values of quantities of useful things for life. The accumulated money values of the money accumulators, are not only money values consisting of nothing but legal titles over a quantity of money, and existing for nothing but to be made into larger quantities of money. More than this, to measure them by what useful things could be bought with them, was to violate their purpose, were they to aim at useful wealth, to multiply them utterly indifferent to any usefulness.
And even this, the indifference of this wealth to any usefulness of wealth is not yet the whole truth of what distinguishes this accumulated money wealth for the purpose of its further growth. Indeed, these accumulated monetary quantities, quantified in money sorts, do not even consist of really existing sums of money, but are pure claim titles to money. This money does not only exist as a number on paper, it is not even money, which only represents an existing money quantity, but is not one, because the accumulated money values are nothing but fictitious money values, money values which represent the speculation on future values, money values which consist of nothing but debts, which are not wealth, but debts which promise a future wealth. Stocks and all the lovely paper values that rich people accumulate are nothing but bills of exchange on future increases in value, nothing but fictitious wealth. But it is this fictitious wealth, or more precisely, the speculative accretion of fictitious wealth, paper values, on which everything in this economy depends and thus dictates what ultimately matters in the lives of citizens in these citizen societies. In these speculations on the accretion of wealth in the casinos, called stock exchanges, all sorts of factors can fuel these speculations on the gains and losses of stocks. What is certain in any case is that – however accomplished – the reduction of the shares of wealth that ordinary citizens acquire for the necessities of their lives through well-behaved work are a reliable signal of increasing profit prospects for the speculations on increasing profits of stock speculators. The question, why such enormous masses of wealth can collapse like houses of cards, one asks oneself nevertheless rightly, if one considers, what these normal earners must furnish at wealth proofs, in order to get times at something more money, than it gives a salary, a bank credit. These sums, which can secure such a loan for the purchase of, say, a car, are still so infinitesimally tiny compared to the gigantic sums of money that fill the accounts of the money accumulators. The zeros after the decimal point, which furnish the accumulated wealth of banks with these accounts, represent masses of money with which normal earners cannot secure the purchase of a car or a little house, but could buy entire towns – and despite these masses of money that banks accumulate, banks are left without any money from one day to the next and can then no longer even pay out the measly amounts of money that those small owners have deposited with them. Why this is so can be easily explained from what has been said above about what the money wealth that counts in these societies is made of. Why banks can go bankrupt so abruptly, not in spite of, but because of their mountains of money, has its reason in what the gigantic wealth of banks consists of. That such amounts of monetary wealth can collapse, as is otherwise only possible for people whose wealth is always on the verge of financial nothingness, as if they were houses of cards, is because they are in fact a kind of houses of cards. The whole wealth of banks consists, as outlined above, of debts of the money accumulators, which they advance to these, with which they finance their business with their fictitious riches, thus that purchase and/or sales of speculations on the increase of their wealth promises. The wealth of banks consists of nothing but the lending of money titles, which in turn are nothing but the debts of the wealth speculators for their accumulation of fictitious values. There, then, the failure of a speculation on future profit is enough to bring the whole swindle down to speculated increases in wealth, which is the business of banks, using debt to finance debt for speculation on future profit. This may all sound pretty crazy, but the thing is that it’s just as crazy as it sounds. And it is this craziness that reveals, in banking crises, what banks, and by extension the whole economy, is all about, where the supreme goal of all, is speculation on the accretion of money for the speculation on the accretion of money. Casino capitalism? No, capitalism is that casino.
After the feudal dominions were ousted, a mini-minority of people obsessed with the accumulation of money, who own everything in these societies, use the globe and its inhabitants for a race that will be won by whoever succeeds in mobilizing most effectively the labor and the minds of ordinary people, with the help of a political force and its political personnel dedicated to this goal, for this race for the accumulation of wealth, an economy with potential for wealth from which one could feed the whole world, but does not do so, because in this casino also called capitalism wealth counts only as long as it brings in an increase in money measured in money, for which the supply of humanity with means of living, is the sheer destruction of wealth, because with its consumption the beautiful money is destroyed and so would no longer be available for its increase. This is the casino that these rich people run for their competition for the question of who has the most of the money freed from any use, in which the inhabitants of these societies are the puppets who, with their labor input and with their cunning, are allowed to create this kind of money-wealth for which the few rich people contest their race and from which those, who create it, are excluded, in order to force them to create the whole wealth, so that they get at least the part, which they need for their existence, from the whole wealth, whose yield the money-accumulators collect for their crazy race thanks to their property at everything and everyone, by their labor input. For the pursuit of this goal, freed from all utilitarianism, civil societies put all material interests of life at the service of this goal.
For this purpose, they not only direct all their life activities towards this goal, but in order to implement these goals in the everyday life of the citizens, they keep a gigantic amount of this wealth consuming political institution together with a political elite, all together called the state, which appropriates the wealth, which it needs for the execution of its goals, for safety’s sake forcibly recruits from the citizens by taxes, and whose use serves the supreme task of forcing the citizens into the pursuit of their life interests, the putting to service of all these life interests for the pursuit of this supreme goal of citizen societies, called economic growth. And there is no interest in life in these societies, no matter how insignificant, into which the political power does not redefine its reason of state with its laws. It is not too surprising that for this kind of enforcement of this supreme reason of state in everything and anything in the lives of citizens, nothing, but also nothing at all, which would not be regulated by law, a gigantic apparatus of violence is needed. That the enforcement of this reason of state in the everyday life of all citizens therefore also only works if and as long as the citizens make this reason of state in the form of their law-abidingness their own, i.e. do what the political power wants from them, because this reason of state with its highest goal of the never satisfactory growth of fictitious abstract wealth, can only be achieved with the voluntary energetic service to and the alignment of all the vital interests of the citizens of these citizen societies for the growth of this wealth freed from all vital interests, could make the citizens think, in view of the oblique goals that banking crises reveal as the supreme goal of civil societies, what they are actually doing so committedly or allow to be done with them. And then, in banking crises, one is supposed to worry about the banks, of all things?Comments preferably in English.