[This is a little different than what I envision for this blog – as it contains more than a few positive assertions – but wanted to share.]
– just a brief note about the concept of “class warfare” and “anti-corporatism”. I don’t think it is that simple. Some corporation are pretty damned cool. Many rich people are rich because they are hard-working and have great ideas. I don’t see anyone picketing the Gate’s family. What is at issue is that many people make incredible money playing money games – essentially gambling.
Their money does depend on how smart they are – but not on the quality of the goods and services that they produce. Their money depends on things like how long the cable is to their computers, so their trades go in a couple milliseconds faster. It depends on how much interest they can collect because the people that owe them are unable to pay down the principle of their loan; they get rich when people pay money and get nothing tangible in return. I think many people were more than willing to let this go – until it got completely out of hand.
Government regulations were either insufficient or created unintended consequences. Banks started trading financial “products” so exotic that even insiders were perplexed – and somehow rain or shine – the banks won their bets. The people became irresponsible borrowers, allowing credit to sustain them instead of insisting on fair wages and benefits for work. Opportunists started flipping houses on credit so frequently that HGTV was full of reality shows about it. Then, as many suspected, it blew up – causing difficulty for nearly everyone without a golden parachute.
I’m incredibly happy that the problems of these systems have come to light. I have hope that the next group of young people won’t get trapped in the cycle of debt that many of us have allowed ourselves to fall into. This isn’t a movement that ignores personal responsibility, is anti-business, or pro-hand-out….quite the opposite. I’m hoping that this conversation ends in pointing out that usury and gambling aren’t acceptable sins and a successful rebuttal to the bizarre neo-Calvinist concept that being rich automatically means that God loves you more, that you are responsible, that you aren’t taking advantage of anyone, that you aren’t stealing, that you aren’t sucking on the public teat, that you aren’t a drain on society, that you aren’t dangerous, etc.