Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The End Of A Not-So-Great Year: What Fact Affected Ordinary Mortals Most In 2014?

The rich get rich,

and the poor get poorer!
Of course I don't know all the possible candidates, but offhand I'd pick this one from Frank Minero at Addicting Info:
The Rich Get Richer: World’s 400 Richest Get $92 Billion Richer in 2014 (VIDEO)
... which means, of course, the rest of us got at least $92 Billion poorer. Yeah, I know, it's not a zero‑sum game, but the exceedingly wealthy have been playing it as if it is. I predict 2015 will be no better for us ordinary folks.

How many public schools would that $92 Billion buy? How many road repairs and other infrastructure improvements? How much more clean water and clean air? How many more jobs for working people?

Read Joseph Stiglitz's The Price of Inequality or any of the similar books out there: the extreme degree of economic inequality, in America and worldwide, is bad for everyone, including the wealthy. It doesn't have to be this way. But it will continue to be this way as long as the obscenely wealthy are allowed to pick the pockets of literally everyone in every other socioeconomic stratum.

Remember: there is no constitutional right to exorbitant wealth. But there is a human right to reasonable physical comfort, adequate food, secure shelter, basic healthcare, education for children and purposeful gainful employment for adults.

If the trend to an extreme schism between the very wealthy and the non‑wealthy continues to grow, it is only a matter of time before civilization itself goes to ground. We can surely do better.


  1. We don't see the 1%ers and their limos driving our streets and haven't figured out that they've bought our Congress. I guess we will finally riot when they decide to end net neutrality and forces us to put down our laptops, ipads and smart phones and end up out on the streets.

    1. Happy New Year, ellroon!

      Americans are so enamored of the story of their revolution that "revolutionary" has become a catchword. a favorable term for something everybody likes. But it simply isn't so: the vast majority of Americans are anything but revolutionary, and have no intention of committing revolution, at least in the governmental sense. I've spent a fair amount of time in the streets, waving a placard, but in all that time I've known no more than one or two revolutionaries, and I'm not one of them. I just don't see it happening. And considering the nature of the radicals I've met who do want it to happen, I'm pretty sure I don't want them to have anything (apart from protest in the streets) to do with forming a new government. For better AND worse, we're stuck with the governmental system we've got...

      ... unless the radical Right succeed in their multi-decade efforts to replace the system. Damn, they got a good start on doing just that before most of us even realized what they were doing.

      Congress is indeed bought; for better or worse, Congress is largely incompetent, and the suite of tricks to keep Congress from working too well when it's better that they not do so is by now well-known. It's not the legislative branch but the executive and judiciary branches (often in combination) that I really worry about. John Roberts and the Fat Choirboy will spend, ultimately, several decades each on a bench doing things our founders would never have recognized as justice... and our power to stop them or even slow them down is painfully limited. As to the executive, look what de facto President Cheney did, and imagine what the next GOPer prez will do. The prez and the Supremes together could in fact undermine the entire system, accomplishing most of the deed with two elected officials and nine appointed officials.

      The clear intention of the current largely Republican-appointed federal bench and a quasi- or real-Republican White House in 2016 could finish us off once and for all. I am fairly certain Obama... indeed, even his Democratic successor, should we be so fortunate... will never be allowed to appoint and seat another federal judge. That isn't what our founders intended, but damned if it would surprise me if it happens.

      As to a successful revolution here, I think that is no longer even a possibility. See Orwell, think about the military weaponry and intelligence tools available to police, and hope things stay peaceful... and tolerable... for a while longer.



• Click here to view existing comments.
• Or enter your new rhyme or reason
in the new comment box here.
• Or click the first Reply link below an existing
comment or reply and type in the
new reply box provided.
• Scrolling manually up and down the page
is also OK.

Static Pages (About, Quotes, etc.)

No Police Like H•lmes