Jeffery Epstein’s arrest and suicide taught us something: the 1% have a public image problem.
I also post at Medium.
Picture two fellas, old friends who are perusing the news and discussing world events. They’ve met up for years and enjoy discussing the happenings of the day with each other. The two buddies could be in a shoppette coffeehouse in a mid-sized town anywhere in America. Or sitting on a stoop in a large city. Or relaxing on a porch in a small town.
Fella #1 (motioning to Fella #2, showing him the news story he had been reading): See this? This here news story says that this billionaire right here had an island…an island where he kept children as prostitutes.
Fella #2: What? No.
Fella #1: Yup. And at least twenty billionaires, CEOs and high-ranking officials are rumored to have visited the island.
Fella #2 (eyes squinting): Only twenty??? Gotta be way, way, wayyyyy more than that…in the low hundreds at least. Have you seen those guys? They’re trash.
Know what the nation’s 1% need to do with some of that money they hide offshore? Hire an image consultant, the type of person who helps people deal with the public’s negative perception issues.
Then again…ahhh, late-stage capitalism. As long as money keeps showing up in tax shelters, right? Forget the masses.
To willfully-ignorant, shallow types who embrace a vapid existence, late-stage capitalism must look great on paper.
Whether you are rich or you think you are one decision away from being rich (white dudes: I am talking to you), our current system has got to sound pretty darn perfect.
Money trumps all. Politicians get bought. Laws can be rewritten for the right price. Compounded interest opportunities everywhere, coupled with tax breaks—as well as the ability to sidestep tax laws, for a price. Corporations put employees on public assistance or lay them off altogether and the stock value skyrockets. Passive income generation and “working” from the golf course or oceanside terrace.
On paper, America’s current system appears to favor money over everything else—legality, morality, decency—money makes right things wrong and wrong things right—money turns regular men into supermen and supermen into super-dupermen.
In many ways, America’s current system does grant unequal power to the rich.
In many ways, it doesn’t.
Instead of being universally revered, only idiotic white rubes idolize the 1% nowadays. Rich folks want the entire world to feel the need to emulate their ways but their only fan base is insecure bros dependent on their own white privilege and stuck in the Reagan years. While bros fawn and bow down, the rest of the world wants the rich to pay up.
In another blog series, I call this current level of inequality the victory that doesn’t deserve a victory party.
A big contributor to America’s stress right now comes from its richest citizens as they learn that their victory party ain’t happenin’. Well, maybe it’s happening in some places around the country, only it resembles the worst forced-fun work-party ever. You know the party I am talking about, the one where your boss tells you that attendance is mandatory and you must have the time of your life…or else.
The collective vibe at this victory party is so toxic and passive-aggressive that even the worst of the bro-dickheads can’t drum up festive feelings in themselves. Yeah, the bros who love to ruin the mood for everyone else because it makes them feel ultra-bro—this victory party sucks so bad that these bros keep whipping out their phones to cruise their social media and avoid eye contact.
And remember: this was their victory party. The prize that these white dudes dreamed of their whole lives.
Getting rich, but trading in your respect in the process—then crying afterward because no one respects you.
Bros want it all, dammit.
And you are a poo-pants for not giving it all to them.
<cue cut to video of bro crying crocodile tears>
Posted at Medium.
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