Cartoon by: MATT WUERKER
If you’ve read my books, you will know one of the themes is wealth-inequality and the future of our society. The bad guys are the Old Guard—privileged plutocrats; while the good guys are fresh young anarchist privileged plutocrats… plus a bunch of hackers, dolphins and rogue AIs.
I started writing the series in 2008 against the backdrop of what felt like a significant financial collapse and the stirrings of a grass-roots response.
The time felt ripe then. The 99%, Occupy Wall Street movement seemed to have identified the source of the problem… but then, somehow, we got distracted by political correctness and divided for a decade… I blame plutocrat-puppeted social media troll-farms sponsored by the 1%, but that’s another book…
I am not against extreme wealth. I think striving for your own Lamborghini or Private Island is a good motivator for the hyper-talented. But the people at the bottom need to live a dignified life too.
We should always try to create a world, where, if the cards were dealt differently, we would still be comfortable at the bottom. This is just smart. You never know when you or your children might fall on hard times.
I live in Switzerland, and reducing poverty is one of the stated goals of our social-security system. Switzerland is not short on Billionaires, and our tax rate is very bearable, but we do have a wealth tax and a high minimum wage. This pays for a system that ensures that even the most hard up citizens will be provided education, healthcare, food and a roof over their heads.
The choice is pretty simple:
Some pieces I have read recently that make the optimist in me hope there is a new glimmering of awareness!