308. The masters or mankind

It’s fascinating to return to Adam Smith, father of capitalism and of Economics’ attempt to become a science, and read about class war, a concept many believe developed by Marx, much later. Smith tells us of the mighty and powerful of his time, the elites, at war with the rest of society, pursuing their own interest to the detriment of all others. This, he predicts, will always be their behaviour, maximising their outcome beyond their needs, opposed by the rest of society, the aggrieved, Victor Hugo’s Miserables. Smith’s analysis of the sociopathy of the elites is prescient in its accuracy, but even he missed developments at the bottom of the social ladder, the poor giving up the fight, abetting their tormentors, no longer complaining, no longer uniting, no longer opposing the wealthy as they pillage and ransack, transferring wealth from all pockets to theirs at increasing pace. The rich have succeeded at making class war uncool, unfashionable for the losers and thus, just a fond memory

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