Sunday, July 13, 2014

Hear the Tumbrels in the Distance?

The Pitchforks Are Coming… For Us Plutocrats

...At the same time that people like you and me are thriving beyond the dreams of any plutocrats in history, the rest of the country—the 99.99 percent—is lagging far behind. The divide between the haves and have-nots is getting worse really, really fast. In 1980, the top 1 percent controlled about 8 percent of U.S. national income. The bottom 50 percent shared about 18 percent. Today the top 1 percent share about 20 percent; the bottom 50 percent, just 12 percent.

But the problem isn’t that we have inequality. Some inequality is intrinsic to any high-functioning capitalist economy. The problem is that inequality is at historically high levels and getting worse every day. Our country is rapidly becoming less a capitalist society and more a feudal society. Unless our policies change dramatically, the middle class will disappear, and we will be back to late 18th-century France. Before the revolution.
And so I have a message for my fellow filthy rich, for all of us who live in our gated bubble worlds: Wake up, people. It won’t last.

If we don’t do something to fix the glaring inequities in this economy, the pitchforks are going to come for us. No society can sustain this kind of rising inequality. In fact, there is no example in human history where wealth accumulated like this and the pitchforks didn’t eventually come out. You show me a highly unequal society, and I will show you a police state. Or an uprising. There are no counterexamples. None. It’s not if, it’s when....

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Anonymous said...

I've been seeing exactly this since the 1980's. We are at each others throats, separating ourselves from those who do not hold our very own ideals, beliefs and theories on how our nation and life should be lived and run. I myself am guilty of this. I cannot abide being at the same table as someone who is ranting negatively about immigrants and how Obama is Satan himself.

Just yesterday I was a vendor at a Flea Market and across from me, another vendor spent his entire day ranting to customers about Obama, the refugee children and why we don't do what Israel does, which is to send "forty" (his number not mine) rockets into the Palestinians and that's the end of it. Really?

Our nation has become ignorant, illiterate to our own and global truth and in order for this to change, dictators such as the "coke" Brothers Inc. will have to be somehow, undermined in their relentless strive for domination. Just as Mr. Hanauer (apoligies if my spelling is wrong) is speaking realistically (and most eloquently) about what is really happening, the "cokes" and Fox owners and other media giants are doing the opposite in order to gain their ends. Herein lies our challenge.

What would be helpful, is an enlightened uprising as was evident in the 1960's. I don't see this happening. What do we do?

I'm no Obama supporter, but I believe our problems are far more severe than this President.

Thanks for printing this Susan. It's a great piece!!

Brian Loudermilch said...

Once upon a time, Giving money to ANY politician with the Expectation of future favors was called BRIBERY.

Nowadays, BRIBERY isn't a Crime.

Mind You, the Activity of Giving money to Politicians for Future favors has NEVER Changed. The folks that give the Politicians the Most money get the Most favors.

The folks that are doing the BRIBING just changed the name to "Campaign Contributions" and then made sure that it was All perfectly Legal.

"Campaign Contributions" = Organized BRIBERY.

Try Fixing that Problem First.

If the Politicians don't get the Message, then Torches and Pitchforks are a Perfectly reasonable alternative.