How The Rich Gambled Away Our World

Gambling scene from Stanley Kubrick’s Barry Lyndon

The stock market is just gambling on corporations. That’s all it is. Since time immemorial men have wagered on fighting cocks, running dogs, and racing horses—anything that moved. In the 1600s men made-up artificial beings called corporations and wagered on their predatory movements across the globe.

And now—as with so many gamblers—the human family will have to suffer. These degenerates have bet the whole house, and all bets are off. God is coming to collect and They’re bringing the flood, the fire, the whole fucking apocalypse. How did the world go bankrupt? As Hemingway said, slowly, then all at once.

Artificial Cocks

Corporations are legal persons. That’s just a legal fact. In practice, however, they’re superhuman, which is why I call them beings instead. We talk about the coming of AI, but it’s already here—has been since the 1600s in fact. That is the corporate form, and it’s already taken over the world, multiple times.

From the beginning, these artificial beings were given dominion over entire continents, while rich men created the first stock markets to take bets. We think of stock markets as being a modern thing, reaching their greatest heights, but the largest corporations in history were actually among the first listed.

The Mississippi Company, the South Sea Company, the Dutch East India Company. Absolute predators upon humans and the land, but who made gamblers a lot of money if they got in and out on time. You can see the South Sea Bubble popping below. It was an absolute supernova of money set alight.

Since then corporations have evolved and become marginally less speculative, but the basic concept is still the same. An artificial being competes in a race, and people take bets (and side bets) on what the beast will do. It could be a horse, a cock, or a corporation. Since time immemorial, people will bet on anything that moves.

Artificial Cock Fights

The beauty of stock markets, however, is that you can bet while the race is still running. Indeed, the race never stops. This constant, churning motion creates the illusion of stability, and is today how we really measure wealth. The richest people in the world don’t have cash, land, or ‘real’ assets. Most of their wealth is in stock.

All Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos are really holding is a bunch of betting slips, bets that their bird is going to draw more blood. These animal spirits are enough for them to borrow against, trade, and be called wealthy men. And so the artificial cocks create a dick-measuring contest, sustained by the greed of other gamblers egging them on.

The other beauty of these cock-fights is that there are so many going on that they, in the aggregate, acquire a stability of their own. Sure the markets crash in a flurry of feathers every 5–10 years, but overall they go up. So index funds and fund managers are able to spread bets all over, and this betting becomes stable enough for retirement funds.

At some point, however, you have to ask what’s going on outside of the betting hall. Like any degenerate gambler, these stock market jobbers have left very unhappy homes.

The Real World

Colonialism was rich, white people betting on the looting of the Earth and all of its people. Not much has changed. Capitalist growth is fundamentally driven by resource extraction and consumption, and it has to keep accelerating or it crashes. Colonialism led to Capitalism, which leads directly to Climate Collapse.

While these dudes have been getting their jollies at the bookies, they have completely neglected and even robbed their homes. Our Earth. They have wagered the future of every child living and yet unborn, and they have lost it all. We have irreversibly tipped the climate into something we’re not adapted for, and what are these guys doing on the way down? Just gambling more.

That’s how artificial cocks and cock-fights have fucked the real world.