Feudalism Reinstituted in Suckersland Where One Man Owns Everything

Dateline: Richardsville, Suckersland—Economic inequality in Suckersland has reached its ultimate end point: a single man in that nation owns absolutely everything and all of the other inhabitants are broke or in debt.

Lord Richard, the man who literally has everything, surveys Suckersland from one of his palaces, sending in his robotic henchmen to remind the masses of their lowly station.

A family strolls along, a large robot shows up, displays Lord Richard’s insignia, and the parents strip the clothes from their back. The robot snatches the clothes and also the lollipop from the child’s hands.

Having collected those tributes, Lord Richard will make his daily rounds, parading through the streets with his robot guardians and wearing a thousand shirts at once, over top of each other and stitched together. In each of his hands: a dozen lollipops.

“He certainly has a lot of clothes,” says an indebted resident. “But at least we Suckers have only one plutocrat.”

Before he knighted himself, Lord Richard was a salesman and a predatory investor who looked at business like a game of Monopoly. “The goal in business is to destroy your competition,” he said, “so that you wind up with all the money and the property and the power.”

His prowess as a salesman was renowned. “I could sell anyone anything. I’d just spin the truth of what I was selling, tell people what they wanted to hear, and they’d throw their money at me. They kept buying my mass-produced schlock and then they went into debt. But I also owned the banks to which they were indebted. So I took their homes and all their possessions too.

“I kept everyone working for a while out of charity, but then of course no one could afford what I was selling. I could have exported, but I preferred to be the big fish in the little pond.”

Effectively, then, the Suckers were reduced to serfs who work at the pleasure of Lord Richard, whom many worship as a god. “I had my politicians rewrite the constitution and reinstitute feudalism,” explains the ruler of Suckersland. “I find it just streamlines the workings of plutocracy. Now we don’t have to bother pretending we’re capitalistic or democratic. You know, all of that self-deception can wear on you. The Suckers don’t even have to suffer from doubts about an invisible God, since they can go ahead and worship me. I’ve got everything, after all.”

Economists failed to predict that a formerly-capitalistic country could so quickly regress to a feudal society. As one economist concedes, “I think our problem was that we pulled our mathematical models directly out of our hindquarters. I mean literally, I think I have a second brain in my rear end, like a dinosaur, because I wasn’t really thinking when I came up with my rosy models and forecasts about how a capitalistic economy progresses to an optimal state of equilibrium in which everyone gets what they want.

“Instead, I reached inside my anus and pulled out not just the mathematical tools to disguise the counterfactuality of my assumptions, but the audacity to practice that pseudoscience in the first place.”

Now Lord Richard keeps a bevy of economists as his court magicians and jesters. “Make the peasants believe they’re in a meritocracy,” he’ll order the court economists. And, as Lord Richard says, “they’ll reach up their backside where they store their myths and legends, and start spouting the most astonishing foolishness. I’ll command them to tell the tale of how we’re all rational optimizers seeking to maximize our utility. And they’ll do their little dance to distract from the fact that ours is a nation of Suckers with only one god.”

Author: Benjamin Cain

Ben Cain is a misanthropic omega male who likes to think that the more you suffer, the funnier you can be, and the more of an alienated loser you are, the more you can withstand coming face to face with the horrors of reality. He dedicated himself to discovering whether suffering has a meaning and so he earned a meaningless Ph.D. in analytic philosophy. He shares his findings by writing philosophical rants on his blog, Rants within the Undead God, and he's published a novel, called God Decays, which is available on Amazon. Also, he's pretentiously written this bio in the third person even though he rarely partakes of such conventional trickery.

9 thoughts on “Feudalism Reinstituted in Suckersland Where One Man Owns Everything

  1. Agreed Cain. Really there’s not as much math as there are items to be tallied. And all projections are predicated on which factors you include in the model. Not exactly “science” but then again, neither is law or advertising. And they rule the culture.

    Careful on hacking off economists, though. You can expect a 3-5% increase in your hate mail during the first quarter, but underlining weakness in complaint sector drives down the fundamentals in the second quarter.

  2. Kilroy, that’s true, as I understand it: the economy was more stable when Keynesian theory was in fashion, in that the US didn’t go through a boom and bust cycle. I’m not saying the economy doesn’t exist or that making big structural changes has no effect. I’m saying economics used to be more of an art than a science (Adam Smith’s theory has big moral and psychological components), whereas now the pretense is that it’s a science because of all of the math. That so-called science is phony; economics is not a real science. Economists can’t predict squat and their so-called ceteris paribus laws are just flat-out counterfactual, so their models are based more on theology than naturalistic theory.

  3. The economy is why the tooth fairy can get away with paying you a quarter when there is a surplus of teeth, rfreed. Don’t you know nothing?

  4. Interesting perspective, Cain. I’m no economist, but I would suspect the reason there are no Keynesians jesters in the court is precisely for the reason you gave. They got pushed out with supply side economics of the 80’s.

    And I wouldn’t suggest economic fraud when the Keynesian demand model is precisely why you nor I have ever experienced the kind of Depression that existed when Keynesian theory came into being.

    But like I said, I’m no economist. I just took a course. Could be as wrong as my last test score.

  5. Keynesians wouldn’t say that the private sector is self-optimizing, which is why they see an important role for the government in saving the economy when it goes south. But haven’t Keynesians been pushed out of economics by now, so that they’re regarded more as community organizers or obsolete Marxists or something like that?

    I’m not at all an expert, but I see the last several decades of economics as a whole as a pseudoscientific fraud, with economists as adjuncts to the powers that be, whether those powers are corporations or governments. I’m with Veblen and Mirowski on this stuff. Economists have physics-envy, whereas they should be paying more attention to sociobiology.

  6. Thanks! But isn’t confirmation bias the least of their problems? Maybe you’re suggesting that if they weren’t so easily brainwashed, they could rise up against their overlord and demand some sort of Jubilee year of forgiveness or bankruptcy protection.

    I think that, besides the fear of going up against a more powerful force, it’s national pride that often prevents us from rebelling against the injustices in our society. We don’t want to admit that we had a hand in the major screw-ups that catch up to us and hold us down. (And there I just mixed together three metaphors in a semantic hodgepodge.)

  7. And unfortunately, confirmation bias would have those peasants readily accept what they’d like to be true. Nice article!

  8. “Now Lord Richard keeps a bevy of economists as his court magicians and jesters.”

    Obviously not Keynesians!

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