The state of our political and economic situation in America reminds me of an old Groucho Marx joke about a guy who goes to a psychiatrist. He runs into the psychiatrist’s office and screams, “Doctor, doctor, you’ve got to help me!” The psychiatrist says, “Sure thing. Why don’t you just lay down on the couch and tell me what your problem is. I am certain we can solve your problem, whatever it is.” To which the guy says, “Doctor, you don’t understand. I don’t have a problem. It’s my brother: he thinks he is a chicken!” The psychiatrist, somewhat startled, then replies, “Gee, that’s terrible! Well, why don’t you bring him in and we’ll fix him up for you.” The guy then says, “Doctor, we’d like to do that but we can’t.” The psychiatrist, at this point somewhat annoyed, says, “Why not?” The guy then anwers, “Because we need the eggs!”
The elite 1% of our population has virtually all of the eggs. We need the eggs; however, since our elected officials get their very own eggs from this elite class by serving its interests, we get fewer and fewer eggs, if any, while this 1% continues to get more and more eggs. Our Presidents, Representatives, Senators, Governors, et al, regardless of party affiliation and except for a few honest politicians, who are becoming fewer and fewer in numbers as the years pass, are essentially on corporate payrolls, earning their salaries and bonuses, i.e., their eggs, at our expense. Although we keep needing the eggs, we keep not getting the eggs; in fact, we are at the point of not getting any eggs at all. All we get are mere promises of future delivery of eggs if only we further reduce taxes on the elite 1% so they can produce more eggs and keep more eggs.
And we continue to believe this prescription, this trickle down nonsense, as the economic gospel of Adam Smith, when, in his Wealth of Nations he warns us of the dangers of government colluding with commerce: that is, passing laws favoring the wealthy, bestowing upon corporations the rights and privileges of individuals as in the Citizens United case, eliminating competition, not enforcing a level playing field in commerce, and assisting the big corporations to drive small businesses out of the marketplace.
We have the old dilemma of the fox guarding the hen house. Is it time to shoot the fox?