t was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way - in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.
Have we entered into a permanent new phase in America where the rich have it and flaunt it while the poor simply get by as each day gets harder and harder? Commonsense says that if someone was smart enough to become rich in the first place, they would only be able to add wealth over time. I have a friend that arrived in America, penniless with his father from China, now his wealth is beyond fabulous.
He told me the first “stick” (one million dollars) was the hardest to earn.
Be that as it may, the masses may not want to hear that as their individual world sinks deeper into the economic abyss. Sadly, the people with power to make a difference have made it worse and now use the current economic reality as a rally cry to ditch this crazy experiment known as capitalism. Of course, America has never been “rich” the way Europe used to be rich; our system has allowed mobility that was impossible in those rigid societies.
Nonetheless, talk of revolution is in the air.
I think this is the most dangerous moment for capitalism in America since the height of the movement in the 1930s and 1940s. It has different names and mostly no name this time around, but a lot of catchphrases like “income inequality” and the newest “work life balance” designed to discourage the accumulation of individual wealth and individual effort at chasing that wealth. In short the idea is to demonize financial success and then dismantle it through taxes and other schemes.
The problem is that these schemes are picking up steam and could become more than a ripple.