The super-rich have seceded from America even as their grip on its control mechanisms has tightened. … Wall Street, and behind it the commanding heights of power that control Wall Street, has seized the policy-making apparatus in Washington. Both parties are in thrall to what our great-grandparents would have called the Money Power.
As the world of traditional nation-states dissolves, there is only one unifying force: money. Money has no nationality, no allegiance, no heritage. Globalization eliminate borders, but it also eliminates another crucial element needed for the well-being of the plebeians: patriotism.
More and more of our infrastructure becomes antiquated, the private sector progresses by leaps and bounds. If there is funding, they will come. There is no longer a profit to patriotism, and so most, if not all, of the elite have a new nationality: internationalist.
American banks charging higher rates than offshore accounts? No problem. Just move our trust funds on over there. When the super-rich can employ workers abroad for greater profit, there is no incentive to maintain a stable workforce at home. When they can hire private security firms for protection of their assets, public safety becomes a moot point. When you own a Gulfstream jet, a crumbling bridge or traffic jam isn’t a factor in your world-view—and viable public transportation is completely irrelevant.
The objective of the predatory super-rich and their political handmaidens is to discredit and destroy the traditional nation state and auction its resources to themselves. Those super-rich, in turn, aim to create a “tollbooth” economy, whereby more and more of our highways, bridges, libraries, parks, and beaches are possessed by private oligarchs who will extract a toll from the rest of us. Was this the vision of the Founders? Was this why they believed governments were instituted among men—that the very sinews of the state should be possessed by the wealthy in the same manner that kingdoms of the Old World were the personal property of the monarch?
This isn’t the first time our nation has endured elitism. The division of wealth has been an ongoing issue in American history. In the preamble to the 1892 Omaha Platform some of the very same conditions and concerns were addressed:
The conditions which surround us best justify our co-operation; we meet in the midst of a nation brought to the verge of moral, political, and material ruin. Corruption dominates the ballot-box, the Legislatures, the Congress, and touches even the ermine of the bench. The people are demoralized; most of the States have been compelled to isolate the voters at the polling places to prevent universal intimidation and bribery. The newspapers are largely subsidized or muzzled, public opinion silenced, business prostrated, homes covered with mortgages, labor impoverished, and the land concentrating in the hands of capitalists. The urban workmen are denied the right to organize for self-protection, imported pauperized labor beats down their wages, a hireling standing army, unrecognized by our laws, is established to shoot them down, and they are rapidly degenerating into European conditions. The fruits of the toil of millions are boldly stolen to build up colossal fortunes for a few, unprecedented in the history of mankind; and the possessors of those, in turn, despise the republic and endanger liberty. From the same prolific womb of governmental injustice we breed the two great classes—tramps and millionaires.
Senator Bernie Sanders delivered a profound speech about the division of wealth in our nation. In it he provided some astounding facts and figures about money in American society. He further alludes to our nation as an Oligarchic society, where a tiny fraction of the population controls the political, legislative and economic powers of the nation.
- Wealthiest 400 individuals own more wealth than bottom half of America (150 million people)
- 6 heirs (1 family) to walmart fortune own more weath than the bottom 30% (90 million) americans
- Top 1% own 40% of wealth in america
- Bottom 60% American people own less than 2% of wealth
- Bottom 40% American people own 0.3% of wealth
- Between 2009-2010, 93% of all new income went to the top 1% of the population, leaving the remaining 99% of the population to share the remaining 7%
- The median net worth of families plummeted almost 40 percent between 2007 and 2010
I thought we lived in the great free nation: a democratic form of government in which all eligible citizens have an equal say in the decisions that affect their lives, directly or through elected representatives—in the proposal, development, and creation of laws. I thought we lived in a nation where every voice has a say and all men are created equal, but it would appear that even a democracy has a price tag, and whether your voice is heard depends entirely on how deep your pockets are.
The evidence seems conclusive. We are shifting away from a world of nations and into a world of corporations. The language of globalized people everywhere is money, and honestly, what can we do about it? Living in an intricate social structure like ours practically mandates your enslavement to the monetary system. All I can do is hope for a gentle corporate benefactor (if there even exists such a creation) like Google to keep me in bread, and not some ruthless war-profiteering corporate umbrella that promotes a cyclical military industrial complex to water their trust fund growth in blood.