Here's one pattern in which our economic system has been manipulated by the financial elites:
1. HugeCorpo is successful and has amassed a war chest for expansion to dominate the marketplace. Rather than innovate and invest, it has a more efficient idea.
2. HugeCorpo develops and lobbies for government contracts and subsidies as well as relief from regulations that give them a competitive advantage over other companies. These regulations had been enacted to protect the public's health, workers, our financial stability, our nation's sustainability, etc.
3. With fewer competitors and even larger profits from subsidies and expensive "externalities," HugeCorpo grows into MegaCorpo. It can now afford to buy out its competitors and several dozen Congressmen.
4. The people fight to re-establish the regulations, and protect their lives, but MegaCorpo calls on its bought Congressmen, lobbyists and PR machines to carve up even more regulatory authority and gain even bigger subsidies.
5. Conservative groups mount a major propaganda campaigns, well-covered by corporate media, against regulations, blaming government for all evils, attacking environmentalists and health professionals and educated people in general, aimed at demoralizing the oligarchy's opponents and generating votes for right-wing candidates sympathetic to MegaCorpo, which now grows into HyperMegaMuiltinationalCorp.
6. Repeat steps 2, 3, 4 and 5 indefinitely.