In a move aimed at curbing the quickly stumbling stock market, the New York Federal Reserve injected 1.5 trillion dollars into the market today. The Fed released a statement, claiming that “These changes are being made to address highly unusual disruptions in Treasury financing markets associated with the coronavirus outbreak.” The move saw stocks gain for little more than 30 minutes, before decreasing significantly again, finishing over 2300 points (-9.99%) down, the worst day in the stock market since 1987. It is but the latest example of the lengths to which the capitalist class will go for itself, as it denies us basic human rights.
To better understand such a total, 1.5 trillion dollars is the estimated amount that would be required to cancel all student loan debt in the United States. Making state universities tuition free would cost $80 billion. Free school lunches for every child in America would cost $20 billion. For a person making $30,000 a year, it would take 50 million years to make $1,500,000,000,000. $1.5 trillion also represents over 11% of all individual debt in the US including car payments, mortgages, and credit card debt. All this, for 30 minutes of financial optimism for the capitalist class.
During an election cycle in which we have been told basic social democratic measures like healthcare and student-debt forgiveness are wild dreams, this move underlines with particular intensity the fundamental inequalities and systemic barriers movements for economic justice face within the United States. The capitalist state can buy 30 minutes of gains for shareholders for trillions of dollars, while working class americans contemplate healthcare costs, budget rent and food, and count paid sick days.
And while moderates will argue that a change in leadership is all that is required to return to “normal,” coronavirus has in many ways exposed the razor-thin veneer of stability in capitalist America. Many workers, working several jobs to survive and still failing to cover basic needs like affordable housing, healthcare, childcare, and healthy food, when faced with something like coronavirus, find themselves particularly vulnerable. The Reaganite myth that corporate wealth fosters national prosperity is truly dead, as corporations reap massive profits, and working class people, unable to forgo 14 days worth of pay, face the most immediate threat of disease and the most profound costs of stock market crashes and quarantines.
Categories: U.S. News