Basic point

This is a terrible article, made all the more terrible by the fact that the basic conclusion is unimpeachable — that capitalism itself is prone to boom/bust cycles — while the rest of the piece is utter unalloyed bullshit.

This reads like some contrarian Slate piece so eager to parry the conventional wisdom that it goes off into fantasyland.

It can be true and was true that widespread fraud and corruption existed simultaneously with the normal operating of a capitalist system. The ratings agencies were corrupt. Internal emails shows this. Many of the banks and other firms involved in packaging the subprime loans into bonds knew they were peddling something likely to blow up in the very near future despite being rated AAA.

Why write a piece like this? The world is multivariate. There is rarely only one cause or explanation for anything.

This article is of a piece with others I’ve seen lately attempting to deflect all blame for Wall Street’s criminal activities onto the unchanging and unchangeable system.

It is an attempt to align with long-extant neoliberal propaganda that capitalism is the only possible system, so therefore if the system is responsible for our immiseration and it cannot be changed, we all just must accept it.