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Psychologically disturbed and manic society

An interesting paper was recently published by Dr. Mark Stein,  [1] an award-winning scholar from the University of Leicester, arguing powerfully that  bankers, politicians and economists have in recent years been displaying behaviour very similar to that seen in many disturbed individuals, behaviours which could be described as 'manic'. In particular there has been a massive denial of reality and of the risks being taken, and many foolhardy and dangerous practices which have led to recent financial crises, he argues, a trend he sees as has having been happening for the last two decades. He interestingly uses psychoanalytic concepts less in fashion these days to describe a manic state of mind marked by omnipotence, triumphalism, overactivity and denial of reality. The kind of actions he singles out include the huge increase in credit derivative deals, industrializing credit default swaps and the removal of regulatory safety checks, such as the repeal in the United States of the landmark Glass-Steagall banking controls. These are all viewed as a manic response to the financial crises within capitalism. He argues that unfettered liberalisation, with a very triumphalist feel following the collapse of communism, has hastened this path.

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