If you go up to the average person and ask them if they would like a million dollars, the not surprising and almost universal response would be, "But of course!" In proceeding further, by doubling the amount offered, you would still be hard pressed to find anybody who would ever say at any point, "You know...no... that's enough. In all honesty, I really don't think I will ever need more than what I already have." But it occurs to me that people in just fulfilling their human predisposition of taking too much will nonetheless not leave enough for everybody else. Might this just explain why the world is in such neverending chaos?
Clearly evident from our history- and our present- where it doesn't take a Rhodes scholar to understand that extreme disparity of wealth leads to endless conflict and terrorism. Logically, endemic strife is the only possible reaction left for those who find no place for themselves under law in the present corporate ever increasing exclusively profit driven economic system.
If you apply pure logic to this contradiction, between ever increasing profit juxtaposed to the imparative of sustainability, it would stand to reason that at some point rather early on in this doubling of wealth example presently only offered to the one-tenth of one percent of the population, you arrive at a point where any economist would tell you that there will be a diminishing return. That is, where the next dollar you are given, earn, or steal would actually diminishes both your own physical and mental well-being and that of literally everyone else cohabitating on this finite globe.
So why do the vast majority of people- especially the obscenely rich- seek exclusive economic control and benefit, while preclude others from ever benefiting along with them from greater and greater amounts of capital? Think of amounts which objectively are beyond any reasonable amount that could ever measurably improve their lives.
Arguably, there are two basic reasons, related to human evolution, that if not fully addressed and evolved through in the near future will preclude humans from remaining a viable life form on this planet:
1. As a life form that relatively recently evolved from hunter gathers, we have not as yet become accustomed or enlightened to the notion that through phenomena like the relatively recent science driven industrial revolution, we are no longer susceptible to instability in our food supply or diseases that literally made human survival questionable in the relatively recent past.
2. The exclusive control of then limited capital in the past to determine who would eat and who would not, mediated through war and domination, might have been necessary then, but really has no place in a 21st century where for the first time we literally have the ability to fulfill all reasonable human needs for the first time in history.
And yet, we somehow continue to implement the obsolete mechanisms of the past like war, which now unnecessarily and ironically consumes the capital necessary to finally make these endless wars an outmoded and no longer practical remnant of the past.
Unlike Karl Marx, I don't look to the proliteriat to understand and redress a socio-economic system that continues to exploit all of us. I don't, because recent history has shown that the indemic poverty of the working class makes them all the more susceptible to the disease of greed, which is expressed through the amassing of wealth far beyond amounts that any individual might find useful. Or simply stated, the present corruption of the Left in both Europe and the United States- the most recent example of which is the Democratic party backing business-as-usual Hillary instead of Bernie- has been right up there on a par with that of the Right with whom they continue to collude.
I think we actually might have a better chance of turning things around by addressing our concerns to the one-tenth of one percent at the top of the economic heap, who presently continue unabated to undermine what ultimately- in the not too distant future- will also be their own undoing? They at least have the education, which is a prerequisite for understanding what is going on. And clearly, this education is no longer available in our purposefully undermined and privatized public schools
The argument I would make to the rich- if ever given the opportunity- is that the amassing of wealth is and always has been a psychological hedge the rich employ in avoiding their ultimate fear of death. I call it the Pyramid Syndrome, where pharoahs of the past- and present- think that they can avoid the grim reaper by building enough pyramids- or their modern day equivalents- and filling them with obscene amounts of wealth that they never derive any life improving utility from.
What is the cost of owning and controlling assets that for all intents and purposes you not only cannot use, but which actually have the effect of destablizing the majority of the remaining population in countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, and the rest of what Naomi Kline calls The Shock Doctrine world? Canabalizing these countries economies to the point where the people's only redress of grievance against the uber rich is to engage in endless war and/or terrorism is their only logical, if regretable choice- they are given no other viable option.
Is it possible to redistribute the unused capital of the uber rich without in any way, shape, or form impacting rich people's real net worth and wealth? Think of an Airbnb or Uber model, where the capital investment of a house or car is shared in a way that maximies the value of the underlying asset without in any way diminishing its real worth to the owner. If Donald Trump has a house that he occupies for two weeks in a year, what loss would he incur if the house was occupied for the remainder of the year by others, who not only got utility out of the house, but also paid the maintaince costs to the point of having a net freeing up of capital for other more productive uses?
Have we forgotten that the genesis of what we historically refer to as human civilization came only after an interminable dark ages. Wasn't it supposed to be founded on the rule of law? A society where one could seek and attain redress of grievance under law without having to commit what we now call terrorism? Have we so soon forgotten that which at an earlier time kept humanity in such chaos and anarchy that social development- with a prerequisite of peace- could never be maintained long enough to allow a renaissance to occur?
Have those running this society so soon forgotten that the real reason for the rule of law was not based on its moral underpinning expressed by religion, but rather on the marked improvement it offered for the chances of human survival?
The Devil and G-d have been having a longstanding argument about the nature and future of humanity. The disagreement is over whether man, armed only with his wits and free will, can ultimately divine a possible purpose to his existence. That is, whether or not some manifestation of immortality and heaven can be attained in this lifetime or whether we are doomed to be born, live, and die without ever achieving peace with insight into ourselves and the others we share this planet with, who in the final insight are only different aspects of ourselves.
One way or the other- be it secular or religious- end of these unsustainable days is on the horizon. We can argue about whose vision of the apocalypse is more accurate or we can finally learn the lesson that might just allow us all to evolve into the next level of human consciousness that brings heaven to earth, while the only thing getting destroyed is human greed.