As Gotham continues…The fox in charge of the henhouse… File this article under smh….
In announcing the appointment of Carl Icahn as his new adviser on regulatory reform, President-elect Donald Trump characterised the Wall Street legend as “one of the world’s great businessmen.” By Trump standards, it was a minor mischaracterisation, one that confused the Main Street world of business, where value-adding goods and services are created and sold, with the trading, dealmaking world of finance on Wall Street.
Such confusion is understandable. For if anything has come to characterise American capitalism over the past 30 years, it has been the financialisation of business. Whereas top executives of America’s biggest corporations once spent their time worrying about products, customers, employees and the communities in which they operated, today they focus on maximising shareholder returns through clever feats of financial engineering. Executives who embrace this financialisation are handsomely rewarded with tens of millions of dollars in bonuses and stock grants. Those who don’t are fired.