The other elephant in the room…

Inspired by the courageous stand of Robert Scoble:

First, let’s get the elephant out of the way, so we can talk about more important things — like how you can find all the news and information that you could ever want or need on my Twitter feed. What is the elephant? No, it’s not that picture of billionaires giving you the figurative finger.

So, what is the elephant? The relentless upward redistribution of wealth and power from the poor and the middle class to the richest 1% of society. In good times, and especially in bad times, the rich get richer. For some reason, this pisses people off.

I’m not super-rich, and no matter how often I announce on this blog that I am ready and willing to sell out, nobody seems to be buying. At this point, I am starting to think the super-rich might not take care of me after all.

Freaking elitists!

That’s what I used to think, anyway. What a buzzkill I must’ve been! As he always does, Scoble sets me straight:

…let’s take the elephant head on: rich people can afford things you and I can’t. I can’t afford a Ferrari either. Even though I definitely appreciate them. I can’t afford a private plane, even though when I’ve gotten a ride in one I’ve always appreciated them and can see why I’d want one. I can’t afford an original Ansel Adams’ print, either, even though I am a huge fan and would love to have one.

Since Scoble opened my eyes, like him “I’ve changed my stance from the one I had… What is the one now? Jealous people should just keep their mouths shut. And I’ll include me in that stance.”

But here’s the rub: I (along with everyone else) will probably be screwed by the super-rich if I am alive. And the year after that. And the year after that. But I will pay for it and deal with it somehow.

And besides, rich people pay for lots of beautiful things, and sometimes they even show those things off in public where people like me can look at them. And the rich and famous are always getting into funny mishaps that make for entertaining reading in the society pages.

What makes capitalism what it is? Elitism and expense IS part of why capitalism is magical and if you ever get to get super-rich, either because you have the money already, or because somehow you won the lottery you’ll see that it is magical, in the same way that the James Cameron movie Avatar in stunning 3-D is magical.

I could go on and on.

Capitalism should be PROUD of the elephant in the room. The rich should embrace it far more than they do. The billionaires should celebrate income inequality and run with it. Many do. I mean, what would you rather do? Guzzle a tsunami of Belvedere vodka pouring off of a giant ice sculpture while supermodels stroke your back, or sit around a dingy coffeehouse listening to some dirty hippie play Pete Seeger songs?

So, to wrap this up, don’t be jealous, let’s figure out how to get more of you into worshiping the rich.

For more discussion, I suggest you head over to the blog of Mr. Grumpy-Pants.

About Brian

I am a Strategist and Discoordinator with UBC's Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology. My main blogging space is Abject Learning, and I sporadically update a short bio with publications and presentations over there as well...
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