By 1976, the international turmoil of the Sexy Sixties had made the United States, Canada and much of the world much more egalitarian than at any time in previous history.
Not only were women and many varieties of visible and invisible minorities gaining ground in the social and legal contexts, but they had also forced a significant downward redistribution of wealth from the elite “Haves” to mass “Have-Nots.”
The top one percent in Amerikkka had seen their share of national income decline from a high of 13.6 percent in 1929 to just 6.8 percent in 1976. And the pattern was similar for Canada and many other advanced western industrial countries.
Moreover, the corporations and the rich were actually paying a relatively fair share of taxes.
The Amerikkkan, Canadian and global economies were fairly booming. The productive investment rate was fairly high and unemployment was fairly low.
In North America there were no food banks and there was almost no homelessness.
And, most of all, many people still had a sense of hope for the future.
But the econocorporate socioeconomic
elite were not content with just having an average of 162 times as much as everyone else.
Even though all their needs were being well met and they had lots of spare cash to invest and thereby become much richer, they seemed to have a primal lust for more and more and more.
And so they started a counter-revolution – particularly in the six primarily white, primarily English-speaking advanced industrial countries: the U.S., the U.K., Canada, Australia, Ireland and New Zealand.
They began by unleashing an unrelenting wave of inflation in a bid to rapidly transfer income from the masses – the poor, the working class and the middle class – back to the elite.
But workers – and especially organized labour (yes, unions) – fought back and, for several years, there was something of a stalemate between the elite and the masses.
In 1979, however, ultra-right-winger Margaret Thatcher – the Iron Bitch – was elected prime minister of the U.K. and the international war on unions and workers began.
In 1980, Amerikkka elected that sorry-assed dufus, Ronald Reagan, as its president and along came voodoo Reaganomics and the absurdity of so-called “supply-side” economics.
Then, in 1983, Canadians elected another demented ultra-right-winger, Brian Mulroney, as its prime minister and the Unholy Trinity was formed.
Over the next 27 years, these three amoral clowns led the world – and especially the English-speaking industrialized world – into a downward spiral that persists to this day.
Traditional liberals and conservatives were replaced by much more mean-spirited and bloodthirsty NeoLiberals and NeoConservatives and an extremist corporate capitalist agenda replaced the much more moderate and humane politics of the recent past.
Governments began madly throwing money at the super-rich under the desperate rationale that if they threw enough money at the super-rich they would invest it all in new productive capacity, create massive new national wealth and eventually brush a few crumbs off their banquet tables for the newly-beleaguered masses.
So-called “free trade” (international commerce on corporate terms) was enacted in order to translate an existing pattern of high industrial wages and moderate profits into a new pattern of much lower wages and much higher profits.
By 2006, fully 12 percent of the total national income – (approximately similar figures in the U.S., Canada and the U.K.) – was taken away from the masses – the poor, the working class and the middle class – and wantonly transferred to the top one percent of households.
But even that was not enough to satisfy the greedy. In the next four years they would steal even more from ordinary Amerikkkans, Canadians and Brits, as well as many others around the world.
In the wake of the global economic meltdown of 2008, more than $50 TRILLION has been lavished upon the banks and corporations across North America and Europe.
And now somebody has to pay for that money the governments “borrowed” from their central banks.
It won’t be the banks, the corporations and the super-rich who will pay. It will be the poor, the working class and the middle class who will pay for decades through increased user fees, smaller old-age pensions, new regressive taxes and savage cuts to public spending on education, health care and a wide range of social programs that primarily benefit the masses.
That is, unless the masses finally unite and overthrow government “of the people, by the rich (and their lackeys), for the rich,” and begin creating real democracies.