The Servant Economy: Where America's Elite is Sending the Middle Class
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America's political and economic elite spent so long making such terrible decisions that they caused the collapse of 2008. So how can they continue down the same road? The simple answer, that no in charge one wants to publicly acknowledge: because things are still pretty great for the people who run America. It was an accident of history, Jeff Faux explains, that after World War II the U.S. could afford a prosperous middle class, a dominant military, and a booming economic elite at the same time. For the past three decades, all three have been competing, with the middle class always losing. Soon the military will decline as well.
- The most plausible projections Faux explores foresee a future economy nearly devoid of production and exports, with the most profitable industries existing to solely to serve the wealthiest 1%
- The author's last book, The Global Class War, sold over 20,000 copies by correctly predicting the permanent decline of our debt-burdened middle class at the hands of our off-shoring executives, out of control financiers, and their friends in Washington
- Since his last book, Faux is repeatedly asked what either party will do to face these mounting crises. After looking over actual policies, proposed plans, non-partisan reports, and think tank papers, his astonishing conclusion: more of the same.
“restraint of trade.”9 c02.indd 28 5/4/2012 7:44:28 AM A B R I E F H I S T O R Y O F A M E R I C A’ S C U S H I ON 29 Anarchist and socialist ideas spread among the working class. Looking Backward, Edward Bellamy’s novel about a utopian socialist United States of the future, became one of the best-selling books of all time. As agitation grew, the Democratic Party, which like the Republicans had been a reliable client of the robber barons, was forced to take up some of the populist cause.
dog-eat-dog competition in which most people will be losers. Reagan returned the portrait of Calvin Coolidge to the White House, along with Coolidge’s laissez-faire faith. But Reagan understood that after Roosevelt, most Americans were not ready to abandon their fate to the cold dictates of the free market. So the economics of the dour Coolidge had to be repackaged. Enter the politics of hope. c01.indd 7 5/4/2012 7:40:06 AM 8 T he S erva n t E c o n o my In the watershed election of 1980,
also known as offshoring, which makes up most of the production of Boeing and IBM. c07.indd 148 5/4/2012 7:55:21 AM T h e S h ak y C ase for O pti m is m 149 Like Rose and Kotkin, Slaughter has an optimistic vision of a bright future that requires her to dismiss China’s potential. After visiting a supermodern industrial complex in Shanghai, she admits it is awe inspiring. “But,” she writes, “the Chinese government is determined to develop innovation as if it were developing a fancy
us justifies our happiness. Scolding those who worry about the country’s prospects, John Podhoretz, editor of Commentary Magazine, told a conservative business audience in the fall of 2011 that the country’s past is ample proof of its future success. “The amazing durability of the American system over 235 years is the primary reason for optimism about the American future.”16 But what do we mean when we speak of “America’s” future? Having expropriated the term “America” from the rest of the
corporate money, the increase will be marginal at best. In all probability it will come in the form of closing tax loopholes in exchange for lowering tax rates, with little net budget relief. This means that virtually all of the pain will be felt on the government spending side. And inasmuch as “big government” remains the villain in the Republicans’ morality play, they can be expected to pursue it ruthlessly. In the spring of 2011, the Republicans revived the idea of a constitutional amendment