Multi-millionaire Nick Hanauer is no dummy. He sees the writing on the wall.
I'd strongly suggest you read this entire piece titled "The pitchforks are coming . . . for us Plutocrats"
And what do I see in our future now?
I see pitchforks.
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.
Read more: http://www.politico.com/...
I remember hearing a phrase during Occupy, "If you won't let us dream we won't let you sleep". What happens when real opportunity for everyone below $100k evaporates entirely? What happens when people can't find decent paying jobs that they can afford to live on? What happens when people have had enough?
I don't want things to get that bad. I have often tried my best to get out in front of the problem before it gets worse. I don't have the resources or clout to be heard, my lack of money as speech prevents that, but Nick Hanauer does, and he is spelling it out for his uber-rich compatriots, cut the shit out before you unleash all hell on yourselves.
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.
Read more: http://www.politico.com/...
Slightly more below the fold . . .
Hanauer calls out the idiocy of "Trickle Down" as well as the entire GOP and too many elected Dems who think they can ignore inequality or appease it with weasel words while they continue their crazed weasel orgy behind closed doors with their wealth donors, but the reality is simply, if people have no money that is not only bad for the economy, it is bad for society as a whole. A society where only the wealthiest 1% benefit is a society destined for upheaval.
Now, for the GOP, this is a win/win. They rob everyone who isn't rich, create misery and then run on the misery they have created by redirecting it at their usual enemies, non-republicans, brown people, muslims, gays, women, gubmint, whatever. The problem with playing with fire is that you too can be burned, and where there are pitchforks there are bound to be torches.
Take raising the minimum wage for instance. Seattle just did that and their economy isn't falling into the pacific ocean, in fact, their city is enjoying an economic renaissance. As Hanauer states in his article the two big cities with the highest minimum wages are San Francisco and Seattle. The two cities with the largest small business job growth are also San Fran and Seattle. If raising wages HURTS workers why are the cities and states that are raising the minimum wage prospering while states that are stuck in ZombieReaganland lagging behind the rest of the country? It's simple, economic growth is meaningless when 95% of the growth goes to that one rich guy, and eventually the other 99% of us figure it out and either shit changes for the better for us or the pitchforks come out.
I do NOT want the pitchforks, but at some point shit is going to snap. There is a limit to what people will put up with. The Super-rich who insist on testing that limit will soon find that history tends to repeat itself.
Do the Super-rich want an America that resembles France before Bastille Day? Cause the French Aristocracy back then didn't see it coming either.
Keep this shit up and it is coming, Plutocrats. And I'm not threatening you, I'm stating reality and the all too easy to predict thing about history repeating itself.
Because we can't hope that corporations and the super rich will do the right thing eventually. That doesn't work. We need to pass LAWS that compel businesses to do what is right for society as a whole, not just their own special interests. All of the CRAP about how we can't raise wages or it'll took r jerbs is just that, crap. This is what the super rich have been saying since we first instituted the minimum wage and it NEVER turns out the way they say it will, same as how Iraq will pay for itself or death panels are coming and on and on. We have to pass laws that compel businesses to pay decent livable wages, and in order to that we need to vote for sane, reality-based lawmakers who will do that.
But to conclude my point, please read this entire piece for a health dose of sanity from one of the .01%ers who gets it. I am not against rich people. I am against rich people who try to make themselves richer by keeping the rest of us poor and miserable. Eventually those poor and miserable people figure out who is keeping them poor and miserable. Wingnuts in the service of the Plutocrats want you to think it's the Gubmint. The vast majority of Americans who are not demented right wing nut jobs know better. You can only push those people too far until your gated communities won't keep you secure anymore.
I will finish by stating the obvious, shit remains fucked up and bullshit. The plutocrats need to let the rest of us enjoy some long overdue prosperity and wage increases before the most extreme among us decide that isn't enough and start calling for the pitchforks. I don't want that, it's the last thing I want to see. The wealthiest .01% have a choice, as Mr. Hanauer states at the end of his piece, they can either start paying decent wages or they can "sit back, do nothing, enjoy our yachts. And wait for the pitchforks."