The Illusion of a Middle Class

Through the decades since WWII the distribution of wealth has grown steadily more one sided. Now at the dawn of 2010 it's literally sickening. Today the top 1% controls 40% of the assets, the bottom 40% control 0%. The top 5% control 90% of the assets, the rest of us...have very little beside maxed out credit cards, a mortage and an ulcer.

The illusion of a middle class is nothing but spin. Spin as a PR tactic designed to keep the collective hands of the havenots off of the throats of the haves. Back in the 70's, when i thought being a union organizer was the best possible service i could provide to my fellow mudittes, i watched as union after union bought into the bogus arguement that their members would be better off with indexed pensions tied to stock market averages or direct stock/bond investment schemes instead of the 'old fashioned' pensions where employers contributed pre-determined amounts into each employees retirement acount.

The pension scheme worked perfectly for the rich, they got trillions of dollars force fed into the 'markets' over these decades. Unlike the investments of the rich themseves, these pension funds kept growing monthly with a drip feed portion of the working classe's wages. These funds were mandated to buy, not what to buy, just BUY. The effect, a rising tide for all, all stockholders, especially the 5% who owned then and still own 95% of the market's assets.

The other perhaps unforseen but greater effect was to implant the delusion in the minds of the woking class that they had a stake in the pardigm of unrestrained free-market capitialism. The delusion spread through union members and nonmembers with equal zeal. The illusion of a free lunch is very powerful. All was well as long as the 'market' kept rising and all the boats kept rising.

Now, after last year's market meltdown, with peak oil as a 'governor of greed' an accepted reality, with the calamity of imminent climate catastrophy at our door, the prospect of economic collapse results in the kinda spin usually associated with carnival rides for the beleagured lower class. Everywhere now millions of market based pension scheme holders see doom at the doorstep, instead of a bubble gum-free lunch they're getting ulcers. Instead of the security promised to the working class they've got worries. Governments worldwide seem powerless to stand up on their hind legs because each is totally owned and corrupted by the big money interests. Democracy is an illusion when none of the choices offer any chance of fundmental change.

The rich get richer and the poor hand over their meger money to make it happen. There are only two classes, the rich corporate elites including their politican puppets and the rest of us, the blindered, bewildered, bankrupt lower class using the lower floor facilities of the outhouse pictured above.