Sunday, September 12, 2010

Searching for a sustainable American aristocracy

The article is entitled Ultra-Rich in Finance Are Meaner Than Rest of Us. On one level the piece is moderately amusing, but on a deeper level it may say something about who actually has a genuine function to perform in society. After all, some historians believe the 18th century French revolution occurred because the aristocracy no longer had a “role” to play. What did I do Monsieur Executioner? I am but a mere, benighted parasite, a very rich one.

Capitalism to the rescue

The New York Times ran an article recently on a fellow by the name of Paul Singer, the wealthy head of a $17 billion hedge fund. Mr. Singer is complaining about too much government regulation and interference today.

Singer has informed the nation, at least the part of the nation that he's familiar with, that he is going to support Republican politicians, who are presumably against government regulation and interference. After all, all these pampered Wall Street suits were doing just fine a few years back “not” being regulated.

And finally, as the New Yorker magazine expose reminded us, there are the boys from Kansas—the fossils from the Koch fossil fuel family--funders of climate denial and assorted front groups not fond of either science in general or the 21st century.

The next step

It may be time to seriously consider that much of America's current ersatz aristocracy is a dreary collection of losers with no real role to play. They and their camp followers are really an impediment to America's revitalization and prosperity.

No matter how hard we want to deny it, skirt around it, cover it up or talk about the "good" rich, class warfare is hardening in America. Our current aristocracy has no role to play. Sadly, they are not perceptive enough themselves to understand their irrelevancy.

Some Information:

The United States of Inequality

New cities: off the grid and thinking locally

Photo credit: corda strappata/Francesco

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