The benefits of economic oppression are obvious, and they can be summed up in three words: comfort, freedom, and legacy. The wealthiest people in the world can enjoy whatever comforts they can imagine. At the snap of a finger, they can have things poorer people would have to work their entire lives for.
The rich are the only people who are truly free. Nobody has the leverage to tell them what to do for nine hours per day. So they’re free to work however, whenever, and wherever they want. They’re free to travel wherever, whenever and however they want. Barring going on a shooting spree in a shopping mall, they’re free to break most laws. Even if they get arrested, they can hire a team of attorneys to bend the law so they’ll either be found innocent or charged a fee that represents such a tiny percentage of their wealth, the legal consequences are inconsequential to them.
The 1% have more money than they could spend in their lives, and most of that money is sitting in investment vehicles that will continue to make money after they’re dead. So as long as their descendants aren’t completely irresponsible, they can live comfortable, free lives indefinitely. If all you have to do to have that kind of life and legacy is sign a piece of paper approving the exploitation of workers you’ll never meet, I doubt many people would pass up the opportunity. Getting rich through extortion looks temptingly consequence-free, but it has hidden costs.
Consider the kings and serfs from the Middle Ages. Royalty squandered their wealth and lived more comfortably than their serfs could ever imagine, and yet the serfs of today live more comfortably than the kings of antiquity could have imagined. The reason we live so much more comfortably is because of technological progress, which is the result of billions of people all over the world applying their time and education to scientific study. The more people who collaborate on research, the faster it generates results.
If instead of forcing everyone to devote the bulk of their lives to menial work for just enough money to survive, we devoted our resources to give as many people as much education and free time as possible, we could speed up humanity’s technological development exponentially. If we didn’t have our priorities so backward, we could easily be living on the moon before Generation X dies of old age. If we had never oppressed anyone in the history of mankind, we would have been building android factories on Mars a hundred years ago.
Even though the rich may be freer than their employees and customers, their freedom comes at an unnecessary cost. A wealthy person can walk through an inner city ghetto safely, but they’d need to hire paramilitary escorts. Their family is free to sleep soundly without fear of burglars, but that’s only because they have million dollar security systems and security guards. The rich can bypass all the cumbersome and demeaning security measures at airports by flying in their own planes, but they never stop to really ask themselves, “Why do we need security measures in airports at all? Why do we need locks on our doors? Why do we need bodyguards?”
We need security because there are billions of stupid and/or desperate people in the world. The reason the world isn’t filled with billions of intelligent, content, philosophers is because the leaders of the world have designed the system to exploit the majority of the world’s population. If we dedicated our resources to helping people instead of oppressing them, we wouldn’t need to lock our doors or carry guns or have metal detectors at airports and schools. We probably wouldn’t even need armies because everybody would have enough resources to survive and thus wouldn’t need to fight each other.
Until that day comes, freedom will always be so expensive that only the wealthy will be able to afford it, and it will always be an unnecessary expense for the rich because they created it by exploiting those with less financial leverage than them. It would be so easy for rich people to leave their children a Utopian world. All they need to do is treat everyone as equal human beings. The only cost to them would be not being able to hoard more money than they could ever possibly spend.
If you enjoyed this post, you’ll also like these:
Predatory Capitalism Creates Poverty
- Poverty is the root of the world’s biggest problems, and predatory capitalism is the root of poverty
- The fundamental problem with the economy
- The poor aren’t taking all your money. The rich are.
- 7 economic injustices we all accept
- The downside of economic growth
- How predatory capitalism warps the way we define maturity
- The lottery is a microcosm of America
- Stop talking about guns and start talking about poverty
- How the economy works (Comic)
Socialism and Communism
- Americans need to learn the difference between socialism, communism, and capitalism
- Billionaires won’t save you, and socialism won’t kill you
- Who will help me make some bread? (Short story)
The Life of the Rich
- The legacy of a billionaire
- The letter I’ll never send my CEO
- This Was Your Life: The billionaire (Comic)
- How becoming a billionaire works (Comic)
The Life of the Poor
- What it’s like to be poor
- My American Beauty-esque rant about life in America
- Why do poor people play the lottery?
- Why are Americans so violent and unhappy?
- You might be depressed because the system is crazy, not because you are
- The Adventures of Monk and Punk: Book 1 (Comic)
- Occupy LOL Street: The Plight of the Homeless (Comic)
Oppression in the Workplace
- Advice for young workers
- Stop treating people like shit and they’ll start giving a fuck
- 7 ways worker’s rights still need to improve
- 7 reasons minimum wage should be higher
- The injustice of employee contracts
- Professionalism is a straitjacket
- We need to do more to help people get the job they’re suited for
- The customer is not always right
- A Brief History of the Working Class (Comic)
Success and Retirement
- Life Path Flow Chart
- Why does it have to be so hard to retire?
- How to escape poverty
- Have a healthy balance of passion and duty
- Is it lazy to not want to work?
The Housing Market
- The housing market is a crime against humanity
- Suburbia is a sensory deprivation chamber
- How the housing market works (Comic)
Healthcare in America
The Stock Market
- How the stock market works (Comic)
- How bank greeters work (Comic)
- How freedom works (Comic)
- What America’s class and tax system really looks like
- 12 Things wrong with America’s tax system
- Why do so many small businesses fail?
- A novel approach to taxing the rich
- Introduction to cryptocurrency
- The most important factor in the value of cryptocurrencies, and how it applies to STEEM
Fixing the Economy
- My 1-point plan on how to save the world
- Humanity’s quality of life is relative to the quality of business model we use
- Politics won’t stop being evil until economics stops being evil
- Collapse is the product of unsustainability. Sustainability is the product of sustainability.
- The economy needs a love stimulus
- The world won’t get better until you stop being a consumer whore
- Buy a better world by donating dividends
- One dollar equals one vote in the economy