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One of the first things that conservatives say whenever the idea of taxing the wealthy is mentioned is that the liberals are promoting class warfare. This phrase is a throwback to the days when Marxism was the monster under the bed for all true Americans. I submit that the intended audience has no idea what “class warfare” really refers to. All they know is that class warfare = socialism = bad. No one of significance has been exhorting the proletariat to throw off their chains and take over the factories since decades ago. Nonetheless the phrase still resonates. It must have something to do with the Commies putting flouride in the water.

I don’t know about you, but I feel like class warfare has been going on for years and I’m on the losing side. The ever-increasing concentration of wealth is an undeniable fact. On a personal note, over the last 15 years my income has steadily declined. Now it’s zero, or will be when my unemployment benefits run out.

What’s in your wallet?

Class warfare is and always has been a clash between those on the mountain tops and those below, with the high ground usually winning. Think back 100 years ago, to when the factory owners hired Pinkertons to crack the skulls of workers who wanted decent working conditions. Think back to the founding of the Republic, when only white male property owners could vote.

There were some uprisings from time to time: Coxey’s Army in this country, the Silesian Weavers Uprisings. Most of them never rose beyond the level of the Occupy Wall Street movement, except for a few local exceptions. The lower classes did make gains over time, of course, but it cost them a lot of skin and blood; and in the end, here we all are in the 99%. (My apologies to any of the 1% who’ve read this far.) The conservatives are working hard to suppress not only the demands of the lower classes but also the primary mechanism through which they express those demands: unions.

So, anybody know how to make the financial equivalent of a Molotov cocktail?

On second thought, maybe that’s not such a good idea. We’ve already seen what happens when financial instruments go boom.