Dear Dirty America


Jamie Dimon of JP Morgan Chase

March 09
20:59 2012

Credit: Financial Times photos

(originally published at 100 Peculiarly Useful So-Called Poems)

I read about Jamie Dimon with rapt attention.
He is single-minded as anyone you might imagine—
he’s been indefatigably organizing for decades—
he works as much as any slave
& drives others to work like slaves, too.

But he pays himself millions
out of the billions he’s gained control of
& those whose services he doesn’t dispense with—
his cadre of financial engineers—
he pays millions to, also.

He keeps finding
ways to operate his firm less expensively
whether Commercial Credit, Citigroup, Bank One
or, currently, JP Morgan Chase—
then seizes competitors’ profitable operations
when deceleration of economic activity
exposes their profligacy.

In a so-called communist dictatorship
he would be part of the apparatus of the state
allocating funds for this or that
dam, power plant, university, port, electric grid
computer network or mobile phone system
aircraft carrier, submarine
quiver of missiles, or fleet of fighter jets—
for the benefit of the people of the nation
not just shareholders of his firm—
at least, according to his understanding
& the understanding & wishes
of the dictator & the apparatchiks.

Great power attracts corrupt people
&, it’s said, great power will corrupt anyone—
but I doubt that Jamie Dimon is corrupt—
he is doing what he thinks best
for JP Morgan Chase’s shareholders—
which is also very lucrative for Jamie Dimon—
according to the religion of opportunism & money.

He is like the superior soldier
on either side of every battle, every war.

I believe he is a paragon of capitalist efficiency
& I aspire to be
as effective in my way as he is in his.

Tho I believe that he is at least as disciplined
& cleverer than his rivals
who have often enriched themselves
while wasting the resources of their shareholders
& everyone’s resources
who have paid those shareholders
more than they have received in return—
I believe that what Jamie Dimon is doing
& what his rivals are doing
& what dictators & their apparatchiks do—
whether they call themselves
communists or fascists
or investors or executives of this or that firm
or conservatives or moderates or revolutionaries
or Muslims or Christians or whatever—
is pathogenic—
& I don’t mean just to use an elegant word—
I mean that what they do causes suffering
all out of proportion to any benefits they bestow.

Eric Chaet, The Turnaround Artist, born Chicago, USA, 1945, raised on rough South Side, pre-computer factory, office, & warehouse jobs. Some teaching, some independent self-taught technical consulting. 1974, Old Buzzard of No-Man’s Land, poems, Toronto, Canada. 1977, Solid and Sound, vinyl LP of songs, Lee’s Summit, Missouri, USA.  Mid-80s to mid-90s, silkscreened, hitchhiked, & stapled 1500 cloth posters to utility poles along American highways.  1990, How To Change the World Forever For Better, brief prose philosophy, Greenleaf, Wisconsin, USA; 2nd edition, 1994.  2001, People I Met Hitchhiking On USA Highways, mostly narrative prose, De Pere, Wisconsin, USA.  Lives in Wisconsin, industrialized dairy farms & cows, remnant cheese & paper factories & factory hands & outlaw mammals & birds, post-construction boom, reactionary politics & obsolete machinery, a smattering of professionals & millionaires.  Poems published, over 50 years in many USA states, plus Brazil, Cuba, Ireland, Scotland, England, Spain, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Sweden, Switzerland, Nepal, India, China, Singapore, Korea, & Taiwan, often in translation. 

Reach him via Contact box at bottom of any page of his website, 100 Peculiarly Useful So-Called Poems, <>. 

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