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The Shocking Tale of Two Generations

The Shocking Tale of Two Generations

Frances Moore Lappé

It’s easy to feel fatalistic, accepting as “just the way things are” an America in which the top one-tenth of 1 percent controls as much wealth as the bottom 90 percent, while roughly a fifth of American children live in poverty, and half of American infants

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The American working class was betrayed by the Democratic Party. Read Listen Liberal by Thomas Frank.

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Banner day in the forums! An article on the battle over bankruptcy between Biden (and Hillary Clinton) and Warren that led to the bankruptcy bill of 2005 that has driven many households formerly in the middle class into poverty was posted at RSN on May 6. Yesterday and today it is drawing numerous informed comments in the same vein as this article on CD:

The income inequality and poverty we see today in this country were not the result of supply and demand, but of a massive shift away from the policies of the New Deal to policies espoused by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and spelled out by soon-to-be Supreme Court Justice Lewis Powell in his infamous “Memo” of 1971. The Chamber stands as a proxy for the worst of USian corporate business and especially for Wall Street.

Along with the growth in income inequality we have seen a dramatic drop in the number of firms in every major industry through mergers and acquisitions, leading to unchecked power to raise prices for the firms that remain. Not coincidentally, In These Times re-published on May 3 an article by the late “People’s Historian” Howard Zinn from the year 2000 about what Marx said and what he didn’t say, and its remarkably accurate vision of the economy we see today worldwide.

And yes, Blockertoo is dead right that the “centrist” Democrats were right in the middle of all of it. Having declined to fight for moderate center-left policies in the 70s and 80s after the McGovern fiasco of 1972, they abandoned all pretense of being anything but Republican Lite with the DLC (1985), encouraging the Republican party to veer even more sharply to the right.

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Although real wages combined with high inflation resulted in a downward economic trajectory for the middle class starting in 1973, Saint Ron ascending the throne in 1981, combined with the 1985 Democratic Leadership Council (DLC) formation accelerated that downward trajectory and institutionalized the new world order that is leading us to neofeudalism.

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