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Cannibal Capitalism: How Big Business and The Feds Are Ruining America

ISBN: 978-1-118-17531-6
256 pages
December 2011
Cannibal Capitalism: How Big Business and The Feds Are Ruining America (111817531X) cover image
An unbiased look at how the economic practices of corporations, leaders, and government are severely damaging the American way of life

Most of us have lived our lives by the rules—going to school, investing in real estate, and building careers—but the so-called Great Recession has changed everything. Cannibal Capitalism: How Big Business and the Feds Are Ruining America answers the questions on everyone's lips; what happened and where do we go from here?

Unlike in most other recent instances of financial turbulence, when this crisis hit, the country turned on itself economically, with the powerhouses—corporations, business leaders, and government—throwing the everyman under the bus. In an effort to avoid becoming slightly less rich, the super-rich effectively cannibalized the true engines of growth in the economy, in the process putting the bottom ninety-nine percent of the population at serious risk of losing everything. Cannibal Capitalism fights back, arguing that to really recover we need to educate our children, invest in our small businesses, use our inflated money to develop real things that build real wealth, and get back to exporting in a big way.

  • Takes a thoughtful look at how income and wealth disparity, industry consolidation, anticompetitive business practices, political ideological extremism, and the hoarding of existing wealth are destroying the wealth building capacity of the nation and the promise of ideal capitalism
  • Examines the financial crisis and its fallout in a clear, no-nonsense way
  • Explains what we can do to fix a broken system and come out on top

The economic crisis rocking the foundations of the international financial system has had a disproportionately devastating affect on the average person. Angry, afraid, and confused, regular people are looking for answers and Cannibal Capitalism is here to help, illustrating how the super-rich did everything in their power to stay safe at the expense of everyone else.

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Introduction vii

PART ONE: What's Wrong with Th is Picture? 1

Chapter One: Th e Face of Self-Destruction 3

Chapter Two: Putting the Cannibalism in Capitalism 15

Chapter Th ree: Suicide-Enabling Case Study: Crash of 2007-9 37

PART TWO: How Did We Get Here? 63

Chapter Four: Th e Evolution of Cannibal Capitalism 65

Chapter Five: Devolution of the Real Economy through Cannibal Capitalism 92

Chapter Six: Your Own Opinion or Own Facts? Selective Morality 103

PART THREE: Where AreWe Going? 113

Chapter Seven: Th e Choice of Health 115

Chapter Eight: Miseducation of the Masses 133

Chapter Nine: Power to the People 149

Chapter Ten: Bring the Money Home to Momma 181

Conclusion: Why Are We Promoting Economic Cannibalism? 196

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Michael C. Hill began writing for the Washington Post in 1988, but has since become an independent businessman. He has created several successful businesses, the oldest being a technical training and consulting firm, and the largest an award-winning home-building business. Having won dozens of awards for teaching, he now works as a venture capitalist and developer of new small businesses, including a green technology company, a business services and accounting firm, a unified communications technology company, and an unbiased news site. He regularly conducts business development and project management classes and seminars for public and private sector audiences around the world. He also is an occasional contributor to the Washington Post and other mass media outlets.
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"...Hill's analysis of cannibal capitalism's hazards is well worth the attention of readers, especially Occupiers who have yet to hone a cohesive message." (USA Today, January 2012)
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December 01, 2011
Cannibal Capitalism

Bank bailouts, stimulus, zero percent interest rates, and quantitative easing have been happening at unprecedented levels, all done under the banner of job creation. While corporate balance sheets swell with tons of cash, trillions of dollars are sitting in money markets, and the stock market has rallied to two-year highs, there is still no dramatic job recovery. Some blame big government and others condemn big business.

In his new book, Cannibal Capitalism: How Big Business and The Feds Are Ruining America (Wiley; December 2011; $27.95; 978-1-118-17531-6; Available in Hardcover and Ebook Formats), Michael C. Hill, independent businessman and former Washington Post writer, argues that the fault does not completely rest with people who bought homes they couldn’t afford, nor is it entirely because of subprime loans. The problem runs deeper, which is why recently applied band-aids aren’t approaching a cure. “In short,” Hill says, “the country is in a mess because of corporate greed and government incompetence.”

Cannibal capitalism is the aggregate whole of all the myopic, profit-driven activities commonly practiced in today's economy that destroy long-term wealth building capacity, according to Hill. “It's the constant exchange of real commodities and services for the artificial paper wealth of the financial sector without the use of the "paper wealth" to initiate new "real" commercial activity. Cannibal Capitalism "eats" real wealth and spits out paper subject to the whims of speculation, bubble, and bust. It results in wealth disparity because those with wealth hoard instead of reinvest their money. It is anticompetitive business practices that lead to industry consolidation resulting in the lack of healthy competition to maintain downward pricing pressure. It is ignoring the global implications of a developing world to the environment and the equitable distribution of natural resources. It's not only biting the hand that feeds you, it is ignoring that hand entirely while attrition of the middle-class and inadequate education decimate the wealth-building capacity of the next generation.

In the book, Hill addresses:

  • What’s driving the “Occupy Wall Street” movement
  • The “real” class warfare that Warren Buffett talked about
  • How Cannibal Capitalism undermines our meritocracy and ideal capitalism
  • The keys to getting the millions of unemployed back to work
  • Why housing must be subsidized
  • Why those calling for a return to the gold standard don’t get it
  • The fiscally conservative, business case for universal healthcare
  • Why “going green” most include hydrogen as a principle transportation fuel
  • How American workers can embrace globalization
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