Those who fail in the struggle against irrelevance would constitute a new useless class. People who are useless, not from the viewpoint of their friends and family of course, but useless from the viewpoint of the economic and political system. And this useless class will be separated by an ever-growing gap from the ever more powerful elite.
Here’s an example: All products will have become services. “I don’t own anything. I don’t own a car. I don’t own a house. I don’t own any appliances or any clothes,” writes Danish MP Ida Auken. Shopping is a distant memory in the city of 2030, whose inhabitants have cracked clean energy and borrow what they need on demand. It sounds utopian, until she mentions that her every move is tracked and outside the city live swathes of discontents, the ultimate depiction of a society split in two.
“We must take control of our environmental movement and our future from billionaires and their permanent war on Planet Earth. They are not our friends.”—Jeff Gibbs, director of “Planet of the Humans”
In all, BlackRock and Vanguard have ownership in some 1,600 American firms, which in 2015 had combined revenues of $9.1 trillion. When you add in the third-largest global owner, State Street, their combined ownership encompasses nearly 90% of all S&P 500 firms.
Bernie Sanders said billionaires shouldn’t exist and he was absolutely correct. Billionaires do not pay their fair share of taxes. But what are we going to do with them? Is it a good idea to put them back on the streets if they have been stripped of their wealth? Billionaires? There’s a gulag for that.
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