Thomas Piketty’s (2014) Capital in the Twenty-First Century gives details on the inequalities of wealth distribution both intra- and internationally. Only when these issues are addressed will humankind find a footprint that is consistent with the Planet. Sure, some should be paid more than others, but the current skews are obscene. We were “shaken” to our moral fiber for seeing a nipple on a Super Bowl half time show a few years back, but put up with inequalities that should make us all retch. “There should be no billionaires.”–Bernie Sanders
Oh, great! Now the super-rich want to help. Where have they been all these years? Oh, yeah, getting rich at our expense.
I hate to throw this in, but we on the left must, MUST, stop feeding into right wing myths on federal government spending. We should do our best to study MMT, which shows that taxes on the rich are not needed to fund anything, since taxes and borrowing at the federal level do not fund spending. We should tax the rich to be sure, but for other reasons (lessening inequality, lessening or eliminating economic rent, taxing their externalizations of costs costs onto society, the environment, future generations, etc.). But, we don’t need to tax them to fund spending since at the federal level taxes and borrowing do not in fact fund spending. The federal government can create the currency we use whenever it wants, state and local governments cannot. Those in power don’t spend on things we need as a choice, period, end of story. The head sociopaths in charge of the Fed have explained over and over again that the federal government does not face budgetary constraints, there are other concerns, such as inflation and full employment. Since private banks create most of the money we use, they are responsible for most inflation anyway. Sanders had Kelton as his chief economic adviser, she has a new book (read it if you can) on myths associated with deficits. I wish he would challenge that framing. But, if he doesn’t, we should. And Pelosi, with her destructive and ignorant deficit hawkishness should be frontally challenged to for this very reason. With her, I don’t think she knows any better, and she has a clear class and ideological bias to uphold any damn way.
Funny how quickly the wealthy wants to be taxed, especially when there is a run on torches and pitchforks at the hardware stores.
And of course they frame it in a way as to make them, the oligarchs who created this mess, seem altruistic. All part of their sociopathy.
Thanks for mentioning Piketty/capitalism.
If you read this article linked below, let me know your thoughts. It references N. Klein and Piketty. I think McMillan offers a compelling take on their thoughts regarding capitalism.
Intro to article:
If capitalism keeps chugging along, we’re all in big trouble. That’s the prognosis of Stephanie McMillan, an award-winning political cartoonist and author of the new book, Capitalism Must die! A Basic Introduction to Capitalism: What it is, Why it Sucks and How to Crush it…
The richies are waiting until they are taxed instead of making a huge donation now when it is needed, it must have something to do with write offs. More likely they know they won’t be taxed more.
I find that rather than just bashing on the term capitalism, I like to go whole hog and say unregulated, hyper-financialized capitalism, because that begins to reveal more of what really vexes us. A little bit of controlled capitalism on top of a solid social system is A-OK by me, but the predicate is Mandatory.
imo, very important to get to the bottom of what really vexes us and why!
"So please. Tax us. Tax us. Tax us. It is the right choice. It is the only choice,…" Easy to yell from the rooftops when the chances are nil.
It.will.never.happen. But hey, thanks for the thought! (sarcasm)
From my perspective, when Bernie sold out to Hillary in 2016 ( supported by Wall Street billionaires) and sold out to Biden in 2020 ( supported by Wall Street billionaires) I agree there should be no billionaires, but unfortunately, as usual Bernie’s rhetoric does not match his actions. Bernie: I love what you say…but I detest what you do!
Capitalism has always been based on brutal violence, environmental destruction and making it so that poor countries had little to no say in the matter. Capitalism is inherently undemocratic, and it along with markets are the key drivers of the environmental crisis. We have reached the limits of growth in throughput, pollution generation and most environmental and ecological information is not reflected in markets and cannot be monetized. It was always a monstrous system and it cannot be reformed to deal with society’s largest problems.
a.k.a. neoliberal capitalism, right? (Unless I’m missing something?..)
I might suggest replacing the word “reached” with the phrase “far exceeded.”
I always love these "progressive"billionaires who call for others to be taxed. Nothing is stopping them from writing 10 figure checks to the treasury. What they really want is to take everyone’s wealth down so their wealth becomes relatively bigger. And they end up relatively richer.
There are 538 US Congresspeople. Add in the leaders of the Executive and Judiciary branches and you learn that fewer than 1,000 people run our government. Nearly any one of these people can be bought – for a year or two – for $10 million or so. So, it would cost about $10 billion to buy the entire US federal government for a couple of years.
Collectively, these people can afford to do that. It would work a lot better than writing futile letters.
Crooked betzy and corrupt donald are trying to trap the public school system by threatening to withhold federal funding for public schools. They fully realize the dangers and horrific outcome of placing children and teachers in crowded close proximity classroom settings. However they also know that the majority of teachers like the nurses are unionized who vote overwhelmingly democratic. Betzy is after funneling public money to privately run non unionized charter schools with low pay no benefits inferior quality, unqualified teachers. Whereas Donald knowing full well that most public school pupils come from working class families for whom he is totally oblivious. I can’t understand how this stupid move could possibly help him in November. Other than revenge punishment of the democrat teachers and attempting to break their union, i see no other reason for his dubious intention.
Naw, just Capitalism. It’s how it works.
Yes indeed, with a little rioting and a little BLM, PLM (Poor Lives Matter), ELM (Unemployed Lives Matter) we the people are coming together finally FINALLY.
If these billionaires were sincere they would not only ask for fair taxation but also propose the enactment of antitrust laws so the likelihood of becoming a billionaire can be drastically reduced.