Everything is a racket! My grandfather will say that on the phone when discussing medication or college tuition. He exaggerates a bit but is still onto something. There are major looting rackets within our economic system. Each has their own threat that they prop up with propaganda. A quick rundown of them is in order. Let us go from weakest to strongest of the hogs.
Threat: Children are our future, we must educate them to have a strong workforce for continued growth.
Status: Weak. This racket is crumbling from the top with law school weakness and undergraduate enrollments declining as well as public revulsion at the student debt bulge. Americans may love teachers, but even the middle Americans have grown cold to the call for more spending on k-12 schooling. The rise in home schooling, the rampant unemployment for college graduates under 30 and the open mockery of college degrees are signs that this racket is close to being busted.
Health Care Syndicate
Threat: You may die. We don't want anyone to die from not getting proper care.
Status: Healthy but that spot over there could kill you in 6 weeks. There is pushback on overmedicating already amongst the population. As long as the fatties keep growing in numbers, they will be set so they better not see Americans exercising. Eat, sleep, veg out in front of screens.... This crop of middle aged fatties haven't even hit old age yet, so imagine the heart surgeries to come. A decent threat to the health racket is price shopping and a mobile customer pool.
The Social Safety Net
Threat: It's for the children of the people who would riot if we don't give them peanuts each month.
Status: Healthy with the occasional flare up like welfare reform. You thought welfare ended, hell naw, we just slid on over to SSI. Welfare even creeps up into your home middle class America, just look at this graph.
Threat: No more 9/11s. Keep the red white and blue safe for freedom.
Status: America could elect Gandhi as president, and it would still bomb countries and export more arms than anyone else. The private sector contractor racket (ex: Booz Allen Hamilton) is a healthy feast for corporations. These guys even built up an interior pig trough with the Department of Homeland Security. A lot of red state men employed through these programs. If Obama showed anything, it is that we will invade, bomb and harass because we have the biggest arsenal right now. The Mob Empire won't run itself.
Threat: If the ATMs don't work, the end of civilization will happen, and we'll need martial law.
Status: They get bad press occasionally, but they have the One True Ring. Without their hand on the markets, boosting stocks, the politicians in charge would have nothing to point to since 2008 as a success. Without their firm gobbling up of treasuries and work with the FED, the 10 year would be higher and all of the above spending would have to be dealt with in sincerity.
There is definite overlap in these systems, but they are all the growth pistons in the engine in our economy. Health Care and the Social Safety net need credentialed workers. The FIRE economy needs educated workers. The M-I complex needs cheap money. Marginal health care needs cheap financing. Education needs cheap financing. They all can use politicians' help in getting a helping hand with their top line growth. They all need help from a media that will not ask too many questions. Fortunately, campaign finance rules are lax. Fortunately, these industries all have advertising budgets.
*Before accusations of jealousy, my mom and I are FIRE workers, I have a dad + other relatives in MI, and multiple friends and family in education + health care. It's America. these parts each need to be reduced.