Wednesday, January 24, 2018

COTW Con't.: Rich are Getting Even More Rich

Bloomberg tells us what US Person already knows, the rich are getting filthy rich.  Look at the acceleration in this chart:

On the eve of the Davos conference, where the international plutocrats and glitterati gather to see and be seen, this news must be quite satisfying.  The middle class and poor are very lucky if they can earn more than 2% on their meager savings, while the wealthy reap record investment returns.  As Lenin observed in 1916, "The extraordinarily high rate of profit obtained from the issuance of securities, which is one of the principal functions of finance capital, plays a large part in the development and consolidation of the financial oligarchy...The supremacy of finance capital over all other forms of capital [such as industrial or productive capital] means the predominance of the rentier..."  Lenin's observations are just as accurate today, perhaps more so, than the were in early 20th century Europe*.  So called "neoliberal reforms"--privatization, cutting public entitlement programs, and strict limits on government debt under the rubric of "austerity"--have increased economic inequality around the world according to the  IMF.  As Trump, Jr. so aptly put it in another context, "Its good for us!"

*V.I. Lenin: Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, 1916; ch. III.