The moral decay of our society is as bad at the top as the bottom
It is not just the feral youth of Tottenham who have forgotten they have duties as well as rights. So have the feral rich of Chelsea and Kensington.
There was a time when at least some of the rich felt they an obligation to give back to society. But that’s practically gone. Instead, looting by the bankster class has become institutionalized. They clearly feel no obligation to society so why should a poor kid growing up in a ghetto? That doesn’t justify criminal behavior by the poor kid, not at all. Our society is losing its moral moorings and this is happening across all classes. And the top classes have abdicated any responsibility for providing leadership or being role models.
There are a few of the super-rich who apparently feel a need to give back. Bill Gates has given $70 billion to his foundation and now devotes his life to issues like ending malaria and other diseases, water sanitation and hygiene, homelessness, vaccination, and other projects that genuinely help the lives of the desperately poor. By 2016 The Gates Foundation will have given over 27,000 scholarships to disadvantaged youth with proven leadership ability. And he didn’t have to do any of this. But choose to do so anyway.
When Commodore Vanderbilt died in 1877, there were parades in his honor and he was a hero to the common man. Why? First, his word genuinely was his bond. Second, he paid and treated his employees fairly and kept equipment in top shape. Third, when he got a monopoly on the railroads he *lowered* rates so even more people would use them. Such conduct would no doubt be mocked in investment bank boardrooms today, but then they’re primarily parasites and have built little of lasting value like Vanderbilt did.
While Gates and Vanderbilt are certainly known for being ruthless, their transcontinental railroads and personal computers changed the world. But most billionaires today are consumed with inanities like having the biggest yacht and with amassing even bigger fortunes by any means necessary. Or they make money from money, “fictitious capital” as Karl Marx called, which contributes nothing to the world. Or they sell drugs and launder money via institutions that pretend not to notice..
The Big Picture sums it up.
Corruption at the top leads to lawlessness by the people
Austerity leads to rioting and unrest
Corruption and austerity = global unrest
The elites across the planet today are mostly corrupt. Their solution for curing the financial crisis, which is mostly of their own making, is to slash budgets and ignore the middle and lower classes. This can only go on for so long before there is serious social unrest (like what we’re already seeing in MENA and Britain) which in its extremes ends up being expressed in revolution.
What we need is a massive societal shift in attitudes and goals. No one ever thought the USSR would collapse or the vile institution of apartheid would fall. But they did. Change is always possible.