Washington’s Blog strives to provide real-time, well-researched and actionable information.  George – the head writer at Washington’s Blog – is a busy professional and a former adjunct professor.


Blackrock is the world’s largest investment manager.As Wikipedia notes:

BlackRock is the largest global investment management firm headquartered in New York City. It is one of the most prominent financial institutions in the US. The company acquired Barclays Global Investors in December 2009 under the BlackRock name, making it the largest money manager in the world.

But BlackRock isn’t just the largest money manager … it is also the larges asset manager in the world.

As Wikipeda notes:

As of December 31, 2010, BlackRock’s assets under management total $3.56 trillion across equity, fixed income, alternative investments, real estate, risk management, and advisory strategies. Through BlackRock Solutions, it offers risk management, strategic advisory, and enterprise investment system services to a broad base of clients with portfolios totaling approximately $9 trillion.

And see this and this.

So it is stunning that Blackrock’s Chairman and CEO – Larry Fink – said on Bloomberg TV:

Markets like totalitarian governments.

Investors can determine whether a nation prospers or starves.

Investors can determine the course of nations, including who gets elected and who gets the boot.

No wonder there are so many totalitarian governments in the Middle East, North Africa and around the world.

No wonder totalitarianism has been creeping into America’s politics and economics. See this and this.

Because big investors (or at least big asset managers) like totalitarian governments. If they instead preferred democracy, democracy would flourish.

Category: Think Tank

Please use the comments to demonstrate your own ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical data and lack of respect for scientific knowledge. Be sure to create straw men and argue against things I have neither said nor implied. If you could repeat previously discredited memes or steer the conversation into irrelevant, off topic discussions, it would be appreciated. Lastly, kindly forgo all civility in your discourse . . . you are, after all, anonymous.

8 Responses to “Head of World’s Largest Asset Manager: “Markets Like Totalitarian Governments””

  1. gloppie says:

    I will risk being called colourful names and go a step further:

    Markets foster totalitarian governments.

    I mean the kind of markets we’ve had in the last thirty years, not a theoretical pure “free” market (that will never happen anyway).
    “If they instead preferred democracy, democracy would flourish.”
    But but but…where is the free hand then ?


  2. Moss says:

    Capitalists In Name Only. Institutionalized Moral Hazard. Corporate Welfare.. the list goes on. Just goes to show that the Fed and their gigantic balance sheet has been the market determinant.

  3. BusSchDean says:

    Well, he is honest though a bit contradictory. First he recognizes that markets like totalitarian governments and then he says “if you believe in efficient markets.” Do totalitarian governments want efficient markets? Not if they want to retain control.

    One more contradiction — or perhaps a matter of perspective. If you are a dominant investor you want predictable markets; if you want to take money from the dominant investor you want somewhat volatile markets. Correct?

  4. rip says:

    @bus: correct.

    Depends on your definition of efficient markets. The original efficient market theory seems dead simply because there are none, as originally defined. Not even here in the good old perfect US of A.

    Predictable markets? How about controlled as a better choice of words? Ask the Bilderberg(sp) group. Or the royal Bush family.

    Democracy? Does not exist. Never did. Republic came close. False hope.

    As in the Middle East.

  5. StatArb says:

    whiners and complainers … unite ???

  6. KJ Foehr says:

    Capitalism, socialism, or Fascism? Our system is none of the three. It’s not free-market capitalism, for if it was we would still be digging out of a depression with 20 to 25% employment after the financial collapse of 2008. It’s not socialism; if it was we would have had single payer health care for decades and much higher taxes on the wealthy. And it’s not Fascism. Hitler and Mussolini may have been in “a marriage with corporations”, but there was no doubt who really held ultimate power. In the US we already have the ultimate power being held by large corporations collectively.

    So what is our economic-political system now? It is a corptocracy. Not a representative democracy, but a representative corptocracy. Large corporations have usurped the power of the people by becoming so powerful and so essential to our daily lives that our very subsistence and the stability of our country depends on their well-being – they have become too big to fail.

    Elected and other government officials now represent the interests of corporations more than the people. And it is not just the big banks that have become too big to fail; we have become dependent upon all sorts of large corporations. They have got us by the balls; if they fail, we lose, and if they continue to prosper we lose again because as they grow they become even more powerful, and we become even more dependent on them.

    Now, with the politicians mostly in their pockets, we the people have lost what was our best defense against corporate tyranny. Little by-little over the past 3 decades corporations have largely broken the back of unions and manipulated politicians into eliminating, neutering, or ignoring regulations that inhibited their growth and power. Now corporations have collectively become so powerful and so important to the economy, and thus to the government, that there is no choice but to yield to their demands. They have now replaced the government as the highest power in the land. Hitler would never have stood for it, but it appears we have waited too long and now we have no choice.

    And thanks to corporate control and consolidation of most major media outlets, a large portion of the people have been brainwashed in to believing our economic and fiscal problems are the fault of the government and the unions! The absurdity of it is truly astounding.

    What can we do? Ironically it is the libertarians and Tea Partiers who are the only viable political groups still beyond the control of the large corporations. And the only solution may be to allow them to garner sufficient political power to bring about the collapse of the financial system that Republicans and Democrats both prevented in 2008 and 2009 by bailing out the system with taxpayer’s money and government spending and debt.

    If the libertarians gained power and held to their primitive principles of survival of the fittest, hard currency, low taxes, and balanced budgets, we would soon see an end to many of the too big to fail corporations, an end to the corptocracy, and a return of power to the government once again as a representative democracy. (Another huge irony as they are philosophically opposed to strong central government.) This transformation would be a painful period, and the nation might not endure it, but I am slowly coming to believe that it might be necessary and would be preferable to ever increasing corporate tyranny.

  7. BusSchDean says:

    KJ: The corporations you rail against (not much argument from me) ARE the product of a culture and government that has long adopted a “survival of the fittest” mentality. As you note, we walked away from sustaining the competitive integrity of markets long ago. The difference between markets that have integrity and a “survival of the fittest” mentality is that in the absence of market integrity once “the fittest” win they work very hard to alter the environment to ensure they continue to win. In short, “the fittest” undermine any effort to make markets more efficient. It is simply easier to make money if you are the dominant player in an inefficient market than an efficient one. If we take our eye off of maintaining market integrity we will never know who is truly “the fittest.”

    Weather libertarians, Tea Party, or whatever, anyone who touts “survival of the fittest” in the absence of strong regulations and enforcement designed to ensure the integrity of markets will in the end give us more of the same. The structure of markets determine how well they perform. Period. Government can (though ours has failed miserably at doing so for some time) impose integrity and transparency on market structures. If we give up on government based on its recent miserable track record we are done with efficient markets.

  8. Captain Jack says:

    Grumpy side note — some of us hate, hate, HATE embedded web videos that auto-play without the user choosing to start them. One of the great annoyances of multi-tab browsing is having to play hide and seek to find the disembodied voice that no one asked to start talking. Why the @#$#@ do they do that?