Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Widerquist on making the possible a reality

One more from Karl Widerquist's 2003 The Economic Possibilities of Our Grandparents DOC file. Remember, this is an early version of an essay published in the Winter 2006 issue of Dissent.

I found my way to the article at Dissent, but you have to be subscribed to get to it.

The quote this time is from Widerquist's concluding paragraph. I shortened it and split it into two paragraphs.

There is no level of national wealth, no matter how high, that necessitates some of that wealth trickling down to the common wageworker...

When we read “Economic Possibilities for Our Grandchildren” today, we cannot dismiss Keynes’s vision as far off or fanciful, but neither can we simply wait for the inevitable to arrive. The possibilities are there for us now; they may have been there for our grandparents when average living standards were already substantially above subsistence. But society will have to make a conscious effort to free workers from the struggle for survival, if they are ever going to be able to take advantage of the possibilities our economic growth has already made real.

Powerful stuff.

1 comment:

Jazzbumpa said...

This strikes at the core of why the kind of unequal distribution we have now [and, realistically, for almost all of human history] is evil.

There is plenty of wealth for everyone, but millions of Americans struggle at the subsistence level, while rentiers revel in luxury.

It's also why, sooner or later, heads start rolling.