Counterpunch and

Are We a Kleptocracy and What Does That Mean Anyway?

Editor’s note: In some ways, the economic landscape we face  defies conventional explanation. It’s true that consumers aren’t spending a lot -- measures of consumer confidence are approaching their all-time low -- and businesses don’t have much taste for expansion. The foreclosure crisis -- all but forgotten in elite circles -- rages on unabated. But as Washington Post business reporter Steve Pearlstein noted recently, while “the jobs haven't returned, corporate profits surely have and, at $1.2 trillion annually, are now higher than they were at the height of the bubble. It turns out that companies have found ways to produce as much as they ever did, but with fewer workers.”

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