You want your children to live well, and you do your best to prepare them. Will your efforts be enough?
Or will even the most well-prepared struggle in a faltering society?
Economists argue over whether the middle-class is shrinking, stagnating, or holding its own — but the real question is: Why isn’t the middle-class booming?
Over the past four decades, we’ve experienced fundamental shifts that should have skyrocketed the middle-class.
- Women entering the workplace should have made families more secure. Instead many families now require two, full-time workers.
- U.S. population has increased by 45% (over 100 million additional people). If the newest members of our society were making net contributions, prosperity should have soared.
- Interest rates are less than half of what they were, which should have enabled more people to start a business and become financially independent.
- The end of the cold war should have produced a peace dividend. Was it necessary to replace the cold war with never-ending wars in the middle-east?
Improvements in technology alone should have been enough to launch the middle-class into lives of leisure. But that hasn’t happened.
Instead, the middle-class struggles.
- Consumer and education debt has ballooned, while healthcare, housing, and childcare costs escalate out-of-control.
- Most Millennials expect to do worse than their Baby Boomer parents — with good reason since they already lag behind.
- In the U.S., drug overdoses have tripled in the last twenty years. Suicide rates have increased. And for the first time in modern history, lifespans have decreased.
- Most people will never save enough to retire and, because Social Security is not enough, many elderly people will be forced to work any job they can find.
What’s behind middle-class weakness?
- Some say middle-class struggles result from global competition, but economists assure us that cheaper foreign goods are a net benefit.
- Leftists teach our children that middle-class malaise is caused by western civilization, white privilege, racism, and sexism. But we have less of those now than we did forty years ago. Things should be better.
- Their latest claim is that capitalism has failed. Could that be right?
Or are they twisting the truth with fake words?
- Capitalism is a system that requires companies to compete for your business. To make money, they must meet your needs. We no longer use that system.
- Our current system, which the ruling-class calls “capitalism”, is actually crony‑capitalism, where companies are allowed to use the power of government to manipulate markets, limit competition, and drive up prices.
Crony-capitalism is how the ruling-class takes your money.
Every year, tens of thousands of pages of legislation are written by lobbyists and industry associations. Government bureaucrats write even more pages of regulations.
- Buried in most laws and regulations are benefits for crony-capitalists, including government contracts, grants, special tax breaks, laws that hurt their competition, and even requirements that force you to buy their products.
- Politicians often don’t read the laws they pass, but they always know which laws their supporters want.
- As a result, ruling-class tentacles are woven into hundreds of thousands of federal, state, and local laws and regulations.
Every day, crony-capitalist companies (including foreign companies) are rewarded.
- Their competitors are penalized.
- Politicians (including foreign politicians) get contributions, book deals, or other payoffs.
- Lobbyists get rich.
- Bureaucrats get job security.
- Think-tanks and industry associations get funded.
The middle-class gets the bill, and some get fired — particularly when they work for companies that aren’t politically connected.
Leftists concentrate the benefits and spread the costs.
- A new law that limits competition could be worth billions to a crony-capitalist, but only cost you pennies a day.
- You might never notice the expense, but hundreds of thousands of those laws add up.
Every day the middle-class bleeds from a thousand cuts.
The ruling-class solution for middle-class woes is the ultimate form of crony-capitalism — called Socialism.
Crony-capitalism hurts the middle-class (and the poor) by putting power into the hands of government officials who are inevitably corrupted.
- Every Leftist “revolution” claims they will give “power to the people”.
- What they mean is they will give power to the government. But the government is not the people.
- To actually give power to the people you must take it away from the government.
Leftists say that without a strong government, your life would be ruled by big corporations.
- Yet government is what allows big corporations to rule your life.
- Without government meddling, big corporations would face more competition from small competitors.
- You would have more opportunities and lower costs.
Ruling-class schemes like Socialism promise “free” stuff like education and healthcare. Yet doctors and teachers aren’t volunteers. Who will pay them?
- The perpetual promise is that money will somehow be taken from the “rich”.
- Yet taking every penny from the rich still wouldn’t be enough.
- The middle-class always pays with higher taxes, higher prices, and more inflation.
“Free” stuff is a lie that hurts everyone — except the ruling-class. The poor are sidelined by disincentives. The middle-class pays more to get less.
Income redistribution schemes always promise to share the wealth, but actually only share the poverty (see North Korea, Cuba, the former USSR, etc.).
- Sometimes the harm caused by socialism is offset, as it was in oil-rich Venezuela when oil prices were high.
- When oil prices normalized, the effects of socialism caused societal collapse.
In the U.S., losses from crony-capitalism have been offset by forces that should have caused a middle-class boom. Yet those forces are unsustainable.
- Women can’t join the workforce again, because they’re already working, as are many senior citizens.
- Interest rates can’t go substantially lower.
- Many of our technological advantages have been exported or stolen.
We don’t need to simply stop Socialism. We need to reverse the damage already caused by crony-capitalism.
If we don’t reverse course, our children won’t have a middle-class worth joining.
Want to save the middle-class?
So do we. Increased productivity over the past four decades should have elevated peace and prosperity for all.
- Instead, we’ve enabled the expansion of a predatory ruling-class.
- Worse, Leftists are pushing for a radical expansion of Socialism that would oppress the middle-class, and the poor, for generations.
- Ruling-class schemes that prey on the middle-class are hateful.
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