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How does wealth inequality affect the average American? After all, for those of us fortunate enough to make a decent living, why should it matter that there are a select few in society making astronomical sums of money?
There are some who call for an end to the Federal Reserve system and a return to the gold standard, where the U.S. dollar is backed by physical gold. But why is the value of gold different than that of paper money? After all, paper money is physical as well. It’s tangible. You can hold it. You can covet it.
In January of 2010 the Supreme Court said money is equal to speech. This is the now famous Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission ruling, which allows corporations and unions to spend unlimited amounts to influence our political system. These unlimited funds can be spent without full disclosure, and it’s all perfectly legal.
Health care costs keep rising rapidly, and even when the Affordable Care Act fully kicks in (2014), the expectation is that cost increases, while tempered, will still be unsustainable. There are many ideas, solutions and hybrid solutions to tackle rising health care costs, but at its most fundamental level there are two approaches, and only one makes sense in the long run.
Today Chris Hayes made a great point about the difference between cheating and performance, or that there isn’t really a difference at all, at least not anymore. The problem is that we assume people who have made a lot of money did the right things in life to earn that money, but we know that isn’t always the case. We know there are people who get into positions where they are able to rig the system. We know there are people who once they taste success are not satisfied and then begin to cheat their way to the top. At this moment, a serious problem in our society is that we look up to people who have earned a lot of money. We want to emulate them because we believe they have done well in life because they made all the right and morally correct decisions. This is very dangerous if enough people buy into it. It’s what allows the 2008 financial disaster to go on 4 years without anyone being held accountable.