Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Creative Destruction

Crane-Capitalist VampireIrwin Stelzer, summoned to the front of the room to deliver his book report on "Why Late Capitalism is So Endlessly Awesome," furtively struggles to disguise the sudden onset of adolescent priapism:
GENERAL MOTORS, which, like Ford, lost $1.3 billion in the third quarter, will lay off 30,000 workers and close or downsize 12 plants in a desperate effort to avoid bankruptcy. Kodak is frantically attempting to build its digital business as the use of film declines. Knight Ridder shops for a buyer as the collapse of its local newspaper monopolies destroys its viability. Several airlines have declared bankruptcy as their uneconomic cost structures cripple their ability to compete for customers. Telecoms companies watch the value of their wires drop as cell phones, voice-over-internet, and cable companies poach their customers. Blockbuster flirts with bankruptcy as new, more convenient ways of delivering films ("content," to use the more modern term) to the screens of couch potatoes make a trip to the rental stores unnecessary.
Not that we should be surprised by anything disgorged by The Weekly Standard, but Stelzer's parting thoughts are worth noting, as he heralds the Great Upheaval as "[g]ood news for creative destroyers and consumers, bad news for hidebound managers and their shareholders." As for the workers heaved into the void by GM, Polaroid, Delta, Bethlehem Steel and other companies who have creatively destroyed their communities, livelihoods, and employee pensions, Stelzer doesn't even bother to say "blow me."

I'll sign over a $100 out-of-state check to anyone who can persuade me that people like Stelzer should not be lined up against a wall and shot.