Remember when we fought that revolution?

The one to overthrow aristocracy, and institute a democracy where “All men are created equal”? I think it was about 1776 or so. I don't blame you for forgetting, seems most people have by now.

In the intervening years, immigrants came to this country because of the “American Dream”. It was a “Land of Opportunity”, where anyone from the old world could come, and if he was willing to work hard, do alright for himself. For a while it seemed alright – that dream of your own house, 2.3 kids, a white picket fence was in reach of just about everyone.

I wonder whatever happened to that country. It was so hopeful and idealistic, it was positively contagious. I haven't seen that country in a long, long time though.

I look around – I don't see the dream anymore. I see a land where the rich get richer, often to the detriment of those below them. I see a land where the wealth is increasingly concentrated in fewer and fewer hands. I see a land where the gap between the median and mean income is astoundingly large, and where that median income is barely a living wage. I see a land with a new aristocracy – where social mobility stalls (PDF), where your social status for life is determined by your last name.

I see a land where wealth is distributed on an L Curve. It's not a land where everyone gets their fair share, or even just compensation for the work they do to make this society what it is.

I see a land where inequality is reaching new and unfathomable levels every day, year in and year out. Where more and more, it resembles the feudalism of old – I see a land with a peasant class with an unattainable dream of reaching the levels of royalty.

I'm not in the mood to ponder the broader consequences of this today. How it came to be and what it will take to fix. Right now, I just wanted to give a eulogy for the American dream.


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