It used to be Rags to Riches, but now it is simply Riches to Richer, isn’t it?
‘Rags to Riches’ used to be a widespread phrase that described the kind of success in life to be admired by all and sundry (particularly in the United States certainly – the American Dream no less!) – though a mirage in Britain of course (apart from our classic fairy tales & modern films that is).
How things have changed in recent times, eh?
The latest annual Times newspaper UK Rich & Super-Rich Lists, were published quite some six months ago, and show exactly what we all knew already, didn’t they? The well-off get rich, the rich get really rich, and the really rich get super rich – while we mere observers recognize that those at the other end of the wealth league, the Poor, get rammed further down into the gutter, don’t they?
There are now some thousand really-really rich people in Britain today, including many millionaires made so by Inheritance (and hung onto like grim death), the Banks, Industry & Finance, the Music industry, the Multinationals, and so on (the Queen still gets in the top third). On top of that we then also have the hundred or so billionaire ‘super rich’, well out ahead of the pack, or out of sight you might even say? Their riches are so immense that they equate to a third of the County’s GDP. We are now the world leader in billionaires by population – well done Britain?
Oh yes, it is true that the poor have always been with us, and will always be with us (as the Bible says), but that doesn’t make this state of affairs right does it? It is particularly galling surely when all our faces are being rubbed in it, after four and a half years of austerity for the British masses [some million MORE people in poverty in the first year of our present Government indeed]? We are a ‘developed’ country but we have a dozen million people, nearly twenty five percent of us, living in relative poverty – well done our politicians?
What is the difference between the poor and the rich when it comes to the use of their money then, you might ask?
Well, the poor spend ‘every single penny’ they can get their hands on, including the few pounds they can save up from time to time in an old teapot historically, to pay the rent & bills – all their money is going back into the British home economy of course.
And the rich then? Well, they ‘hoard’ millions of pounds, stuff their mansion safes with share certificates, their many banks’ safe deposit boxes with jewels & bonds, cover their walls with unbelievably expensive paintings (from artists who didn’t earn two pennies to rub together when they were alive), spend a fortune on French Champaign, buy foreign made private planes, park (sorry moor) a yacht in an overseas playboys’ marina, transfer their funds to numerous offshore locations, and use top lawyers & accountants to identify tax loopholes & find a tax haven to avoid paying their fair or due UK taxes. Their wealth never sees the light of day does it, because it is all locked away in investments or whatever, to retain their ‘paper’ wealth (so they can sleep un-relaxed at night, fearing something is going to go wrong in the markets, or they will get burgled)? And of course (like the Queen) they pay their oppressed servants (sorry staff) the minimum wage as well, don’t they?. Have you already heard the squeals of pain when they are threatened with a few thousand quid mansion tax on their two or three million pound homes (you HAVE to feel sorry for them because some are the ‘elderly very rich’)?
The poor are vilified for their reliance on help and are continually denigrated for their failure to get a job (despite the continuing long recessions and the influx of millions of foreign immigrants), or increasingly fail to obtain a ‘living wage’ from their employer (regularly multi-nationals getting away with zero hours contracts and to boot avoiding UK taxes by moving their profits abroad).
All that, despite the Poor Laws being abolished in the 1800s and the start of the welfare state in the 1950s to prevent people falling into the poverty trap [Yet a quarter of our children are now living in poverty, with the majority in so called ‘working’ homes?]. The rich are ‘feted’ for being the ‘wealth creators’ & generators, as well as job providers, when in fact ALL they are doing is simply feathering their own nests, and will treat the rest of society with as much evil harshness as they can get away with, to make extra money (within or outside the law).
The poor who commit crimes have their lives destroyed and regularly get banged up (rightly). The rich criminals with significantly worse offences, or even larger amounts of money involved, simply employ top lawyers to force expensive trials and they mostly get off, or if not a short sentence in a cushy open prison (because of their previous good character you see!) – They then come out and carry on life as normal (or even may write a book about their life to rake in more money).
The ‘system’ in such cases is a natural bias which keeps the masses of the working class & the poor in line, ensuring they are prevented from successfully moaning about societies’ social inequality.
Carl Marx had the right idea, but what he didn’t realise was that in all societies the Powerful become the Rich, and the Rich become the Powerful. Just look around the World and see if that is not true in ALL other countries? Even truer perhaps in the communist states like Russia & China, particularly in Arab states, and in the poorest ‘developing’ countries, isn’t it?
What is to be done about all this? Squeeze the Rich till the pips squeak (swinging taxes)? Confiscate the wealth of the Rich (give the money to the Poor)? Take the Rich’s wealth away when they die (punitive death duties)? Make the Rich LEND their ‘unused’ wealth to the State (with a massive boost to the domestic economy)?
NOT A CHANCE IN HELL! You see it is the Rich that are also the Powerful who controls these type of things, and they are fully self protective aren’t they (so none of that malarkey, eh?)?
[Without a revolution (1700s French or 1900s Russian style (which we certainly don’t do in Britain!) we are stuck with it don’t you think?]