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World Association of International Studies

Post Who Wields the "Invisible Hand"?
Created by John Eipper on 07/04/17 5:43 AM

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Who Wields the "Invisible Hand"? (John Heelan, -UK, 07/04/17 5:43 am)

Ric Mauricio asked on 2 July: "What country is the biggest shareholder of Deutsche Bank?"

Interesting question! The answer might be related to capitalism's "Invisible Hand" that Adam Smith defined in his 18th-century magisterial Wealth of Nations as "the unintended social benefits of individual self-interested actions. The phrase was employed by Smith with respect to income distribution (1759) and production (1776)."  A more parochial question for us Europeans might be "Who wields the 'Invisible hand' in European politics?" Some might answer Goldman Sachs, with its heavy investment in placing alumni in Europe's corridors of political power.  Seven of these alumni have been called "Masters of the Eurozone," investing in loss-making countries such as Greece and Italy as well as having a presence in the Fed, IMF and World Bank.

(See http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/analysis-and-features/what-price-the-new-democracy-goldman-sachs-conquers-europe-6264091.html and http://www.expertinvestoreurope.com/news/1025589/italy-land-opportunity-goldman-sachs )

Perhaps Americans should also be aware of Goldman Sachs' apparent infiltration of the White House

Some might suspect that just as AIPAC and Saudi Arabia are the "invisible hands" behind US Middle East policy, Goldman Sachs might well fulfill a similar role in domestic policy.

JE comments:  Isn't the Invisible Hand supposed to be...invisible?  In any case, the Golden Revolving Door between GS and government is no secret.  Can anyone in WAISworld take us inside GS?  What exactly is the "special sauce" that makes its people so irresistible as political appointees?

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  • "Invisible Hand"; from Ric Mauricio (John Eipper, USA 07/05/17 5:11 AM)

    Ric Mauricio writes:

    The Invisible Hand?  (See John Heelan, July 4th.) Is this the beginning of a discussion of conspiracy theories, Bilderberg and the Masons?

    JE asked, "Isn't the Invisible Hand supposed to be...invisible?" Indeed, it is invisible. Goldman Sachs is but a visible face of this "invisible hand." It is the strategy of "hiding in plain sight." So if one were to look at the power shareholders of GS, one can see where the power is. And believe me, it is an intertwined network of power brokers of the world, extremely challenging to decipher, even for this forensic analyst. One can say that we only see the tip of the iceberg. We see what they allow us to see. But the "invisible hand" is merely following the Golden Rule: He who has the gold, makes the rules.

    So who is the "invisible hand" that controls the bank that exerts great influence on the European Central Bank? JE got close. Very close. It is not Qatar, but Saudi Arabia, through a shell company in the Cayman Islands, controlled by a royal prince.

    Happy 4th.

    JE comments:  Does the Invisible Hand have a puppetmaster, in a conspiracy-theory fashion?  We probably need a refresher course on Smith's concept, but wasn't his Hand beyond the control of individual human actions?

    And a happy (belated) July 4th to you, Ric!

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  • When the Invisible Hand is Visible (John Heelan, -UK 07/05/17 11:48 AM)
    John E asked me on July 4th: "Isn't the Invisible Hand supposed to be...invisible?"

    Only until arrogance makes the Hand visible. One would hardly call capitalist "invisible hands" of Trump, his cronies and supporters "invisible" as the Orange One becomes more arrogant on domestic and world stages.

    JE comments:  There's no shortage of arrogance in Washington these days, but has Trump had any real effect on the economy?  What, beyond the Trump Bump that flattened out in March, has changed as a result of Trump policies?  Not even for-profit prisons have shown much life of late.

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