30 January 2018

Social Groups and Money

Those who control, or are perceived to control, the societal form of money walk a perilous line. On one hand, they are highly compensated and enjoy luxuries afforded to few. On the other hand, if the skewed distribution of wealth causes intolerable stress for many others, then those perceived to control the societal form of money may suffer the wrath of a Market correction.

Albert Speer: His Battle with Truth by Gitta Sereny
"You have to think," Dr. Huphauer said, "that multiplying that ‘seven million unemployed’ figure by a conservative three to include families, there were then about twenty million people in need, with no unemployment insurance and only the most minimal social security benefits. When the earlier catastrophe, the inflation, struck, when a loaf of bread cost a million marks and butter and meat ceased to exist for millions of people, they grew to hate - really hate - anyone who had money, thereby exacerbating the already profoundly resented class system."

Billionaire apologizes for Nazi comment in bus row
28 Jan 2014
In an open letter to the Wall Street Journal, Tom Perkins who is a billionaire described a "rising tide of hatred" of the rich. He later said he regretted using the word Kristallnacht but his message about a new type of class warfare remained true.

When the societal form of money does not function well for many, those who maintain wealth are perceived by the others to be privileged and conspirators. When monetary stress becomes critical, the simplistic tagging of all wealthy people prevails. Tagging a specific social group that has been significantly woven into a society and then yanking that group from the fabric will tear the society significantly. All societal members will suffer the tear, rippling through generations.

Instead, monetary frustrations should be focused towards eliminating flawed monetary concepts as root causes of monetary stress and cyclical conflict, a window of opportunity to make progress towards a more perfect Market.

The Power Elite by C. Wright Mills, 1956, Excerpts
When a handful of men do not have jobs, and do not seek work, we look for the causes in their immediate situation and character. But when twelve million men are unemployed, then we cannot believe that all of them suddenly got lazy and turned out to be no good. Economists call this structural unemployment – meaning that the men involved cannot themselves control their job chances. Structural unemployment does not originate in one factory or in one town, nor is it due to anything that one factory or one town does or fails to do. Moreover, there is little or nothing that one ordinary man in one factory in one town can do about it when it sweeps over his personal milieu.

The History of Money by Jack Weatherford, 1997
Everyone seemed to be looking for a scapegoat to take the blame for the calamitous monetary and economic fallout of the era. In each country, politicians attacked the wealthy class or some particular segment of it - the aristocrats and landed peasants in Russia and the Armenians in Turkey, for example, or the Jews in Germany. 

Privilege (Random House Dictionary):
a right, immunity, or benefit enjoyed only by a person beyond the advantages of most: the privileges of the very rich.

The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen, 2017, Excerpt
We had not chosen to be debased by the French, to be divided by them into an unholy trinity of north, center, and south, to be turned over to the great powers of capitalism and communism for a further bisection, then given roles as the clashing armies of a Cold War chess match played in air-conditioned rooms by white men wearing suits and lies.

No comments: