Some Americans are expressing their frustrations with the status-quo, as this man in the interview. It has become fashionable to seek out a culprit for our situation. The Tea Party blames the Democrats and their social spending for our troubles. The younger generation is targeting Wall Street. Or it might be that the powers that be are playing this situation masterfully.
It is not the Republicans or the Democrats or Wall Street or the Corporations individually to blame: they are all culpable. They control the money, the wealth, the laws, and the courts to uphold the status quo. What is a citizen to do?
Well, citizens have the numbers: 99% of the population is one hell of a traffic jam.
The Republicans now admit this is class warfare. No disagreement there, save for which class the war is being waged on. Since the 1980’s the super-rich have engaged a war on the rest of America. The 1% has almost completely defeated the middle and the poor classes throughout this 30 years period.
Expand for more images and see the chart above showing that Americans, when they can find work, are working harder (increased productivity), with more or less stagnant wages. Compare that to the 1% income earner.
Despite bogus bootstrap narratives employed to rationalize inequality, these disparities are a result of decades of assaults on labor arrangements. Since the 1980s, this country has seen diminished wages and benefits, intensified outsourcing of manufacturing, increased hours in the menial service sector, and the crushing of organized labor and their demands for a living wage and a safe work place. We’ve seen our financial system turn into a gambling hall, cushioned by the government, with little to no input into production. Yet, we’re expected to buy the myth of “trickle-down,” suffer the consequences of austerity measures, and blame ourselves when ends can’t be met.
We were at a cross roads with the economic crash of 2008. Obama took office and promptly sold out to Wall Street when they were on their knees. He provided a rescue package to them with out any fundamental changes to the banking rules. To add insult to injury, he kept the same people in their positions of power. He then capitulated on extending the tax cuts for the super rich in 2010.
Our democracy has been sold to corporate tyrannies. The current system is only working for the 1% and reformation through flawed, uneven and undemocratic mechanisms will not work. We need a new system. What is your vision?
Special thanks to Erin Eldridge for her contributions to this article.